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Stitching Blogger’s Question of the Week – August 31, 2005

  • Posted on August 31, 2005 at 2:44 pm

Today’s “Stitching Blogger’s Question” was suggested by Kim and is:

What do you use to hold your fabric while you stitch? A hoop, a
Q-Snap, a scroll frame, something else, or do you stitch in hand? Have
you always used just the one thing or have you tried one or more of
the others? Which do you like best? Why?

All of the above! I use scroll frames on most of my projects, as long as the fabric is long enough to fit (my smallest sets are 12″ rods with 6″ cross bars). I use Q-Snaps for small projects (I have a 6″ set and a 7 or 8″ set). I still use hoops every once in a while when I have a small project and am desperate. 😆 I also stitch some small projects in hand, particularly charity quilt squares stitched on aida, since the fabric is usually stiff enough to not require a lot of tension.

My favorites are the scroll frames. I like to mount them on a lap stand so that I can use both hands, if the project is wide enough. I like how easy it is to release the tension in between stitching periods. I like the tension you can achieve … for the most part. It’s not perfect, but for my larger projects, it’s my weapon of choice. Otherwise, I like the Q-Snaps for smaller projects.

Who Has the Better Fish?

  • Posted on August 31, 2005 at 2:43 pm

Burger King or McDonald’s?

Well, I figured this one out for myself today. I’ve been craving a McDonald’s Filet-o-Fish for a couple of days, so we decided to go out and grab some fast food for lunch. Terry wanted an angus burger from Burger King, so I thought I would try their BK Big Fish sandwich.

And the answer is? Well, the Big Fish sandwich was much larger than the McDonalds sandwich for the same amount of money. This was a plus. And it had lettuce and onion and other sandwich-y stuff. Plus. But the tartar sauce had this vague aftertaste of mint or something to it. Minus. And there was no cheese. BIG minus.

All and all, I’ll be sticking to my tried and true McDonald’s Filet-o-Fish in the future. Maybe it has something to do with having worked at McDonald’s for a couple of summers many years ago. Or maybe not. But, for me, it all comes down to the tartar sauce. Make or break. And I like McDonald’s tartar sauce FAR better than Burger King’s.

Sorry, but when it comes to fish, the King is dead. 😉

Hip, Hip, Hoo… ow!

  • Posted on August 30, 2005 at 8:48 pm

So, I broke down and called to make a doctor’s appointment today. I’ve been having pain in my left hip joint on and off for a couple of weeks. I’m fairly sure it’s bursitis (swollen bursa sacs in the joint – the bursae help lubricate the joint, I think), as I was diagnosed with that back in high school. I’ve had problems in the past on the 4-hour car ride to my parents’ house and it used to set in around hour 3. The doctor told me before that I could take a mega-dose of four 200mg tablets of ibuprofen before the ride to help keep the pain at bay. I figured I had it licked when I didn’t have any pain on the way up to Connecticut.

The past couple of days were okay, until… youch! There it was, starting before lunch and lasting most of the day. Now, you have to understand that I have three strikes against me for developing a problem in my hips. I’m a side sleeper (yes, I know I should sleep with a pillow between my knees, but that kinda hinders the snuggling process a tad :wink:), I cross my legs when I sit – left over right AND I’m a computer programmer by day and a stitcher by night, so I sit on my behind all day.

Anyway, we’ll see what the doctor says. I’m sure I need more exercise, but when I have trouble just standing up at times, it’s tough to make myself walk normally and DDR (Dance Dance Revolution) is right out. I’m glad that I was able to get in with the P.A. on Friday. I like her a lot, as she helped me deal with my migraines by getting me into physical therapy for my neck and shoulders and giving me the prescription that will knock out the bad ones once they’ve started.

But, I digress. And I need to get off of the computer for the night. Those models aren’t going to stitch themselves (fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it :lol:)!

Weekend Update

  • Posted on August 28, 2005 at 10:23 pm

There’s nothing much to report. We drove to southern New Jersey on Saturday afternoon to visit with Terry’s parents. We got home around 10:00 PM, watching some T.V. and went to sleep.

I did several loads of laundry today whilst model stitching for hours. There’s a lot more of that to come, as there are several parts to my current assignment and at just under 33% completeion right now, I’m think that I’m a bit behind at the moment. I have a feeling that this coming Labor Day weekend will be a marathon stitching weekend. With any luck, I can complete another 33% of the project. Completion of all parts is too much to hope for, even in an extended weekend. I’d be hurting after a true marathon stitch like that!

As usual, I can’t share my progress with you. Sorry! Someday I’ll be able to post pictures, but in the meantime, you’ll have to be complacent with my vague updates. LOL.

I have to chuckle to myself at the recent posts on other stitcher’s blogs about trying to get back to a rotation. I’ve truly given up on that for the rest of the year, I believe. It’s pretty much emergency and deadline stitching at this point, with the model project taking priority, then a small baby sampler due at the end of September (which I don’t have a prayer of finishing in time). After that, it will be the Christmas Ornament exchange from the Stitching Bloggers Exchanges board. And then two gifts for Christmas time. Plus I’ll have to finish all of the ornaments I’ve stitched this year into a giftable form. That will be a marathon finishing weekend. 😉

So, yeah, any sort of rotation or stitching for myself is completely out of the window until 2006. It’s already been a couple of months since I’ve finished stitching anything for myself anyway, so I’m used to it by now! This seems to be how every fall progresses for me since I’ve gotten back into hard core stitching. 🙄

One for the Smart Women!

  • Posted on August 27, 2005 at 9:54 pm

In the hospital the relatives gathered in the waiting room, where their family member lay gravely ill.

Finally, the doctor came in looking tired and somber. “I’m afraid I’m the bearer of bad news,” he said as he surveyed the worried faces. “The only hope left for your loved one at this time is a brain transplant. It’s an experimental procedure, very risky but it is the only hope. Insurance will cover the procedure, but you will have to pay for the brain yourselves.”

The family members sat silent as they absorbed the news. After a great length of time, someone asked, “Well, how much does a brain cost?”

The doctor quickly responded, “$5,000 for a male brain, and $200 for a female brain.”

The moment turned awkward. Men in the room tried not to smile, avoiding eye contact with the women, but some actually smirked.

A man unable to control his curiosity, blurted out the question everyone wanted to ask, “Why is the male brain so much more?”

The doctor smiled at the childish innocence and explained to the entire group, “It’s just standard pricing procedure. We have to mark down the price of the female brains, because they’ve actually been used.”

Lonely Screaming Trees and Model Stitching

  • Posted on August 26, 2005 at 7:19 pm

Okay, so this is a private joke between me and my husband. It’s one of those classic cases of misunderstood song lyrics. Kind of like people hear “”scuse me while I kiss this guy” instead of “‘scuse me while I kiss the sky” in the Jimi Hendrix song. Except this one revolves around the Whitesnake song entitled Here I Go Again on My Own. The lyrics in this song that reference “lonely street of dreams” were misunderstood by my husband to be “lonely screaming trees.”

And now that I’ve explained the joke, how it relates to this post is just the continuation/finale of the tree saga. The tree company owner came out today and ground out a total of 8 stumps (from the 4 trees they took down yesterday and the 4 we’ve chopped down ourselves over the past 3 years) in 30 minutes. The grinder was a remote controlled, robotic number that was pretty slick.

Now all that remains of my precious trees are piles of ground-out mulch, sawdust and dirt. And all I could think of were the remaining lonely screaming trees. Wow, that was quite a long setup, wasn’t it? 😉

On a different note, I’d like to thank everyone for your kind comments on my stitching lately. Today, I’m going to share some models that I stitched over a month ago. They were released at the Nashville show at the beginning of August, so I can post my pictures now. Woohoo! These were stitched for Judith Tuttle of Twisted Oaks Designs. They were finished into ornaments with pearl cabochons for the faces.

Jamie Lynn Angel
Loretta Renee Angel
Nita Marie Angel

Stitching Finish

  • Posted on August 25, 2005 at 10:35 pm

Yes, your eyes do not lie – this is my 3rd post today. What can I say? The SBQ and this happy dance were waiting for me to take pictures, which I did tonight.

I finished this month’s ornament for the Chartswappers JCS Ornament SAL in record time. I was able to pretty much start and finish it while Terry was mowing the lawn yesterday evening, so just about an hour or two. The August ornament was Sapphire Star by Patricia Bage of Patricia Ann Designs.

I’ve been looking forward to this one for several reasons. One, I expected that it would be a quick stitch (woohoo!). Two, it uses my current favorite Waterlilies color, Blue Lavender. Three, it’s the kind of symmetrical, geometric type design that I like so much, done in pretty sparklies and silks. How can you go wrong?

My only complaint is that it was stitched on white opalescent lugana, with straight stitched accents using Kreinik Very Fine Braid #4 in 032 (pearl), which is … a white opalescent. It blends in with the fabric and minimizes the impact. But hey, I’m too lazy to rip it out and redo it in 001 (silver) to match the beads and I’m sure that whomever the recipient ends up being won’t really care. Though, at the rate I’m pumping out ornaments this year, I may not be able to find enough people onto which to pawn these off!

Sapphire Star

Stitching Blogger’s Question of the Week – 08/24/2005

  • Posted on August 25, 2005 at 10:14 pm

Today’s “Stitching Blogger’s Question” was suggested by Melissa and is:

What’s the largest project you’ve ever done? What’s the smallest?

The largest project that I’ve finished and kept for myself is Frost Fairy from Barbara Baatz’s book of designs entitled Faeries. I finally finished this in college, after it had been a UFO for many years.

Frost Fairy

The smallest project? Are you kidding me? I love small projects, so a lot of what I do is small. I haven’t done any of the teeny projects on 40 ct. gauze or that would make the list. Otherwise, all of my Mill Hill Tiny Treasured Diamonds ornaments might fit the bill, but there are 7 of them to date so I’m not going to post them here, you’ll have to follow the link. 😉

Also, my Tea for Two pincushion in a teacup was pretty small, as was the July Exchange scissors fob and the Pincushion Heart ornament – all from last year.

Tea for Two
July Exchange Scissors Fob
Pincushion Heart Ornament

The Treemen Cometh

  • Posted on August 25, 2005 at 2:31 pm

We’ve finally managed to get someone out to take down the 4 trees (2 are completely dead; 3 could have hit the house) we’ve been trying to get rid of for a year. The two poplars are the dead ones, of course. The other two are hickory and oak, so should make some nice firewood for someone, hopefully.

One of the two guys climbed the hickory tree to cut it in segments because it’s just feet from the shed and the house. That was scary to watch, since I looked out the window just after he cut off the first large segment and he was clinging to the tree, waiting for it to stop swaying. He was really far up (ended up going even further) and it wasn’t a terribly wide tree. 😯

They felled each of the two tall trees along the driveway with just one cut a piece. What a thud those made hitting the ground! It’s a unique sound, with sound waves resonating through the wood to create one tone at the same time that the ground resonates with another tone. I can’t even explain it much less begin to reproduce it.

The large, VERY dead poplar at the front shattered into myriad pieces everytime they cut off a major segment. What a mess to cleanup! Terry said that he saw one of the guys scoop something out of the first part they cut and put it into another tree. I asked them later when they took a lunch break what it was, turns out there were baby squirrels in the tree! Hopefully, the mother will come back for them.

For just two men working on four trees, they went pretty quickly (less than 6 hours). I have to say that I’m rather impressed. Definitely not an easy job. I feel like such a … girl. 😆 The owner will be back to grind out the stumps and settle the bill another day. I already transferred the funds out of savings, so I really don’t care. He was able to give us some advice on relatively fast growing, but hardy and strong, trees to plant as replacements.

I had to lock poor Phoebe pup in our bedroom for a good bit of the time they were here. She was having a conniption with all of the noise of the trees coming down and the chipping. I felt bad about that, but it kept her from barking, for the most part. Combine a barking dog with Terry on a conference call with consultants on speakerphone and it just doesn’t work. The round ball of sound energy waves that come out of her mouth and assault my eardrums when she’s close to me and at just the right position is quite amazing. I guess today is an audibly enriched day. 😉

The landscape of my front yard is so changed now. It seems barren and empty and … *gasp* … sunny! Makes me want to cry, actually. 😥 *sniff* I’m very attached to my trees (and my privacy!) and it’s been a long, upsetting saga with this lot since day 1. We started with the only fully wooded lot in the development. I sat and cried my eyes out when they first cleared it to start building. And now we’re having to take down half of the trees that they left in the front. We paid a $5K premium for a wooded lot, another $4K charge to clear it for building and now another $1K to clear more of it. *sigh* Next will be probably be another $1K to install new trees. Maybe more, since I’m going to want something bigger than just the little puny starter trees that will take 15+ years to create reasonable shade and privacy. *bigger sigh*

Gosh, am I whiney or what? Sorry about that! I feel like I run the risk of sounding like Eeyore sometimes. Honestly, though, life is good, in general. I’m thankful for what I have, including the money to be able to remove my beloved trees and the ability to replace them.

Life Explained

  • Posted on August 24, 2005 at 11:11 pm

On the first day God created the dog. God said, “Sit all day by the
door of your house and bark at anyone who comes in or walks past. I
will give you a life span of twenty years.”

“The dog said, “That’s too long to be barking. Give me ten years and
I’ll give you back the other ten.”

So God agreed.

On the second day God created the monkey. God said, “Entertain
people, do monkey tricks, make them laugh. I’ll give you a twenty
year life span.”

The monkey said, “How boring, monkey tricks for twenty years? I don’t
think so. Dog gave you back ten, so that’s what I’ll do too, okay?”

And God agreed.

On the third day God created the cow. God said, “You must go to the
field with the farmer all day long and suffer under the sun, have
calves and give milk to support the farmer. I will give you a life
span of sixty years.”

The cow said, “That’s kind of a tough life you want me to live for
sixty years. Let me have twenty and I’ll give back the other forty.”

And God agreed again.

On the fourth day God created man. God said, “Eat, sleep, play,
marry, and enjoy your life. I’ll give you twenty years. ”

Man said, “What? Only twenty years! Tell you what, I’ll take my
twenty, and the forty the cow gave back and the ten the monkey gave
back and the ten the dog gave back, that makes eighty, okay?”

“Okay,” said God, “You’ve got a deal.”

So that is why the first twenty years we eat, sleep, play, and enjoy
ourselves; for the next forty years we slave in the sun to support
our family; for the next ten years we do monkey tricks to entertain
the grandchildren; and for the last ten years we sit on the front
porch and bark at everyone.

Life has now been explained to you.

My Stick Family from