You are currently browsing the archives for June 2007.

SBQ: Next!

  • Posted on June 28, 2007 at 11:20 pm

This SBQ was suggested by Kathryn and is:

When you start a new work do you look for something small, do you look for another huge project or do you consider your UFOs?

Everything I do tends to be on the small size, since I don’t have a lot of stitching time. I still lust after BAPs, but I don’t try them very often, as I’ve only completed one in my lifetime. πŸ˜† Yes, I do consider UFOs or other WIPs that haven’t received stitching time in a while. I also give in to my craving for newer designs, though. It can be tough to force yourself to stitch on “older” pieces and designs with a world of new projects at your door. It’s been even harder for me as I’m exposed to more and more designers and distributors for OSL. Temptation is alive and well. πŸ˜‰

SBQ: WIP Storage

  • Posted on June 28, 2007 at 11:16 pm

This SBQ was suggested by Jennifer and is:

How do you store your WIPs and other projects that you have kitted up?

Honestly, I have no set storage mechanism. Older WIPs/UFOs are in the closet in my craft room or in pillowcases in the corner of my family room or in a tote bag in my craft room, etc. The newer stuff is in a basket in the stitching corner of my family room, in my DMC needlework tote and mesh bags. No rhyme, reason or system. I’m lucky if I can find the WIPs/UFOs that I want to stitch on when I want to stitch on them. πŸ™‚

Rough Visit, Part 2

  • Posted on June 27, 2007 at 1:24 pm

Yes, I’m back for more. By the way, did I happen to mention that I haven’t menstruated in 3 months? You know, just to add a little interest to the mix. No worries, I’m pretty sure it has to do with the pill that I switched to, since I haven’t had a period since I started on this new one (Yaz). I called the gynecologist and they said that it’s normal with this pill, but it sure doesn’t help my anxiety level to have that little irregularity hanging over my head. πŸ˜† I’ll just continue buying a pregnancy test every month until everything comes back into balance, I guess.

In other news, Dr. Steve really doesn’t want me to start school in August. I understand his reasoning and I agree with him, but I’m so bored and restless right now that I’m chomping at the bit. I’m hoping that if I get back into stitching more regularly, some of the restlessness will be alleviated. Hopefully. I’m also hoping to start school in October or November. The problem is that something has to give somewhere in order for me to have the time to devote to school. The Art Institute Online says to plan on spending 15-20 hours a week per class and you have to log in at least 4 days a week and provide meaningful interaction. Dr. Steve’s concern (rightly so) is that, with working full time and keeping up with One Star’s Light, I can’t manage to get to bed and get enough sleep every night as it is. So, where exactly am I going to come up with another 20 hours a week for my coursework? TouchΓ©.

I had a good talk with Terry last the other night. I had a sudden crying jag as I laid down to go to sleep that just wouldn’t stop. My throat was swelling up, so I had to sit up so that I could breathe and swallow better. Poor Terry, he has to put up with so much sometimes and yet, never a complaint from him. I am truly blessed with such caring and kind family and friends. Anyway, we talked about how much I hate work right now. He thinks that it’s all symptomatic of my being so off-balance right now because he says that he’s seen how excited I can get about my work and what great work I do. He finds it hard to believe that I really dislike my job so much, but I am fairly overloaded. You see, I don’t know if you remember, but I’ve been trying to get out of my current position for several years now. Problem is, I do my job too well. And they have strapped us into a budget that allows for no extra headcount. I knew this year was going to be bad when I found out that they wouldn’t even allow room in the budget for the consultant that we were planning on bringing in to help take over some of my work. I still have 3/4 of the fiscal year left to get through, so I’ll have to figure out some way of managing my stress better. I cannot tell you how many years in a row I have stated in my development plan that I need a stress management class. Deaf ears and blind eyes, it all falls upon.

And it all falls back on the fact that I am too hard on myself. I am not satisfied with anything but my absolute best. I am my own worst critic. To be honest, I need to get a little better at not giving a da**. But the reality is that I have a Type A personality. My concern is that I’ve been like this for over 30 years. How do you reverse 30 years worth of behavior? How do you fight who you are at your very core? How do you change that? It seems very daunting at the moment. I think it’s time for me to go back and read my book on cognitive therapy again. The next battle is here.

Whooooooops!

  • Posted on June 26, 2007 at 1:47 pm

I kinda dyed the inside of my microwave purple…

Thanks for everyone’s comments. I tried a few more variations of the cream plus metallic and other things, but it just isn’t working. I’ve already frogged the border that I did last night after posting to test whether or not one row of the cream would show up. The problem with purple is that I already tried every shade of purple made by DMC, Crescent Colours, Dinky Dyes, The Gentle Art, Dragon Floss and Carrie’s Threads. The shade in the fabric is just odd enough that nothing works.

So, since I’m working from home today anyway, I decided to throw the rest of the length of cream silk that I was using into a mini purple dye bath in the microwave. Except I used a plastic cup. And it melted in less than 2 minutes. And there was purple dye running out of the bottom of my closed microwave door. And the inside is now half purple. Oops!

I wrote to Terry in his meeting and asked him to stop at the grocery store on the way home for some bleach-infused cleanser. When I told him what happened, his response was, “We’ll get it out. Or dye the rest of it purple.” It helps to have a level-headed husband when you’re a spaz. πŸ™‚

So, I’ll see what I can do with floss colors, because I really like that fabric. I’m now thinking of a sepia tone to give it that old-fashioned photograph kind of feel. There’s a short vein of a brown-ish color in the fabric that I’m going to try to coordinate with.

Thanks for all of your advice! The frogging wasn’t too bad after all.

HELP!

  • Posted on June 25, 2007 at 9:34 pm

Here’s the thumbnail of my WIP picture for Passione Ricamo’s Fairy Celebration 2006. I dare you to find the 10 rows I’ve stitched.





Give up? Try clicking through to see the full-sized image. Now can you see it?

So, the question I want you all to weigh in on is… do I continue or not? As Terry put it, “maybe your color match was TOO good.” So, do you think it will show up enough to warrant being framed when I’m finished? Or should I just quit now? And if I quit, do I frog the 10 rows that I’ve done or just toss the thing completely? Do you think that it will show up better as I continue? Should I do another 10 rows or so and re-evaluate?

And I thought that the cream silk was going to look so good on that fabric. *sigh* Maybe if I hadn’t cut the fabric in half and decided to do it over one. Shucks.

Happy Fairy Day!

  • Posted on June 24, 2007 at 9:16 pm

In honor of Fairy Day, I started a new piece. Last year’s freebie from Passione Ricamo that Laura designed to mark the occasion. Of course, now I see that she released another one for this year. I like that one, too. πŸ™‚

I slept a lot today. Got up at a reasonable hour, spent a bunch of time trying to kit up the 2006 fairy celebration piece because I couldn’t find the right floss to match the fabric, despite going through everything I had in stock at OSL, as well. By the time I kitted everything up, responded to emails, looked at a few blogs, I was tired again, so I laid down for a nap for a few hours.

Anyway, I’ll allow myself a start on this one today, but then it’s back to Summer Dragon. Or maybe I’ll get back to Summer Dragon tonight. I’m enjoying that one. πŸ™‚

Saturday Stitching

  • Posted on June 23, 2007 at 11:04 pm

Not too much to report, actually. I’ve slept a lot the past two days. A LOT. I slept for 18 hours straight on Friday (unintended vacation day) and a couple of extra hours this morning, as well. I also spent some time outside weeding, since the thistle are taking over the area at the front of the house. I mean, several feet high and actually starting to bloom. I love thistle flowers, but hate the weed itself. I get an allergic reaction to it, so I really hate having to handle them, even though I use leather gloves (they are extremely prickly little things). But they need to go and I took out a huge chunk of them. May have overdone it, but my shoulders were already sore, so it was hard not to. I’ll see if I’m up to doing more tomorrow.

Anyway, on the stitching front, I finished stitching a surprise for someone, so I can’t share it. It will get completed tomorrow. After that, I started stitching the Summer Dragon on Christine D’s RR fabric. A long overdue start and one that I will have to push through to make the July 1st mailing deadline.

We’re having problems with the neighbors and their pool. I knew that it was just a matter of time before they started to make enough noise to distrupt us. They have now installed an outdoor sound system that they have had on pretty all day every day for three days now. I have woken up to it the past two days. Granted, I’m not waking up until after noon, but it’s still disruptive to hear someone’s radio inside of your house. And, of course, when I was outside weeding, I heard it as if it was right near me. *sigh* I warned Terry that, as much as we might like this house and this location, if these neighbords drive me out of my mind, we’ll be moving.

It’s a good thing that we’ve decided to pick up a new hobby. One that will take us away from our home on weekends. Sailing. Yep, we are going to learn how to sail and then start renting a boat and seeing how we like it. The thought being that, if we take to it and really enjoy it, we will invest in a boat of our own and go out on the weekends. One with a small cabin and galley, so that we can pull up on shore somewhere and stay overnight, making an entire weekend of it. Ahhhhh… wouldn’t that be relaxing? Leave home and just unplug. I hope that Pheobe will be okay on a boat. We’ll find out the first time we rent one and can take her on it with us. She would be safely harnessed to something solid when we’re sailing, of course. Or maybe in the cabin, but I’d like her to get some fresh sea air. I’ve already started looking into life vests for dogs. πŸ™‚

Well, that’s enough rambling for me. Back to stitching and perhaps soon to bed.

PIF Gifts for Barbara

  • Posted on June 22, 2007 at 4:43 pm

Here is the rest of my finish work that I was unable to share previously. I stitched two Pay-It-Forward gifts for Barbara way back at the end of March, when we were in Salt Lake City, Utah. They’ve been in my waiting-to-be-finished pile this entire time, waiting for me to gather my courage and determination to finish them. I chose two of Barbara’s favorite themes – the ocean and birds.



“Sea Shells”
A freebie from The Victoria Sampler
Finished as a 12″ x 12″ pillow




“Crow and Corn”
A freebie by Cathy Jean of The Victoria Sampler
Finished as a pinkeep/flatfold/ornament

Rough Visit

  • Posted on June 21, 2007 at 9:43 am

Last night saw me in Dr. Steve’s office again for my regularly scheduled visit. And it was a rough visit. Lots of tears. New issues coming out, or rather old issues coming back up to the surface.

You see, I am my own worst critic. I am extremely hard on myself. Extremely. I don’t know why; I don’t know how I’ve fallen into this trap, but I’ve always demanded the absolute best of myself for decades.

But, we’ll start at the beginning… of the session, that is. It was quiz time again. Every few months, I have to answer two sets of 25 questions – one is the Burns depression test and the other is the Burns anxiety test. This allows Dr. Steve to analyze how I’m doing across time. The depression score wasn’t too bad. It was an 18, which is good for me and indicates that I’m managing the depression. The anxiety score was high, though – 33. As high as when I first started seeing him over a year ago. Isn’t that mildly distressing? πŸ˜† Actually, I knew that one or both of the scores were going to be pretty high, based on how I’ve been feeling over the past week and a half. It’s not necessarily indicative of how I’ve been doing in the months since the last time I was scored, but it is true to how poorly I’ve been feeling of late.

And my diagnosis has been changed. Which I knew was coming, based on last week’s and then last weekend’s events. The anxiety diagnosis is obviously still there (in a BIG way), but instead of dysthymia (which is low-level, chronic depression), he’s changing it to cyclothymia. This takes into account the swings, so it is basically dysthymia with upswings.

According to one website, “Cyclothymia is a chronic bipolar disorder consisting of short periods of mild depression and short periods of hypomania (lasting a few days to a few weeks), separated by short periods of normal mood. Individuals with cyclothymia (thymia: from the Greek word for mind) are never free of symptoms of either depression or hypomania for more than two months at a time.”

That sounds about right and I’m actually fairly comfortable with the diagnosis. It’s basically the mildest form of bipolar disorder, with two levels of severity above it. “Genetic factors appear to be causative in cyclothymia as they do in the Bipolar Disorders. Many of those affected have a family history of major depression, bipolar disorder, suicide or alcohol/drug dependence.” Check, check, check and check. ALL of those are in my immediate family. Also, “Sleep difficulties are prominent, with affected persons sleeping little during hypomania, and “unable to get out of bed” during depression.

So, Dr. Steve is now anxiously awaiting the psychologist’s verdict when I see him on July 6th. I told him that I didn’t want to medicate for it, that I didn’t want to be a zombie, I still wanted to feel the highs and lows of life and I actually didn’t mind the hypomanic periods. His response, though, was that there is a price to pay for the hypomania and we both agree that that’s the part I don’t like. I can’t afford to miss work because I can’t get out of bed in order to provide the energy for the later hypomania. *sigh* I know he’s right, but … I just really hate to change meds again. I know it’s all part of the process, but I dislike not knowing how I’m going to react when I try a different medication regimen. I just want to be stable. I want to be normal again.

But, enough about that. There’s no sense crying over spilt milk. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. How many other clichΓ©s can I throw in there? πŸ˜‰

You know what? I’m tired of talking about it for the moment, so the rest of my update will have to wait. More later.

Finishing Work

  • Posted on June 20, 2007 at 12:22 pm

I spent a good portion of my burst of energy this past weekend on finishing work on some pieces. Here are the results:




Assisi Spring Bookmark, designed by Tor Rhuann Designs.





Alegria biscornu on black fabric, designed by Periphaeria Designs.





Renaissance Romance biscornu, designed by The Sweetheart Tree.

I’ve also done some other work, but I can’t share any of it yet. πŸ˜‰


My Stick Family from WiddlyTinks.com