Nov 29, 2019

It's beginning to look...

like this for two days until I switch the Santas or bring out the BOAF boys.  I had black hammered chargers on each side but it was too much for my taste.

As with last year, I am only putting out half of what I used to.  

I purchased these artificial greens when James Creek was closing, wish they had more.  I really love the texture and soft falling branches.

I went out for the Friday $1 poinsettia sale and have splashes of red around.  I like the pop of festive color better than a wooden bowl of greens.  Two small lighted trees and I will finish the tags for the unlit.  (I hear commotion in the parlor, Missy must have found floss again.)  I am staying home Sunday, as far as I know, and hope to get them made and put all the totes away.  Outside is always just fresh boughs and a spotlight, should not take long at all.

When Mark went to feed Petey this morning, he couldn't find him.  Later in the morning, I checked on him and found he was curled up in the box corner and barely visible.  He is a mess.  There was a terrible fight during the night and my poor Pete is really beaten up.  The brats stay inside at night so it wasn't Nitzy, and the extra box I keep closer to the house had the padding and bedding pulled out into the yard.  I tried babying him all day with fresh turkey bits and treats, but since I can't really get close to him I was interrupting his rest and making him leave his box.  I hope he is better tomorrow because I can't capture him for a vet visit.

Did everyone have a nice Thanksgiving?  Our food was good, but Carole looked very pale and not well at all.  Since she started the Entresto, she is having episodes of blurred and grayed vision.  Doctors including an eye specialist have said it's not related.  But it has to be.  

Next week I am taking her to the local cardio on Monday and in Cleveland (pray for no snow) on Friday.  I have appointments Tuesday morning and toe surgery Wednesday.  Time is flying and I so hope to have some days to stay home and relax.  I did all the shopping online with in-store pickup and the Amazon order is being delivered to a locker hub in Rite Aid.  So many thefts of packages, showing the lack of decency, morals, and scruples of people today.  Is there an electrified porch mat that can zap the crap out of these vile scums?  How about a cover that activates a loud alarm if removed?  If delivery persons are willing to throw it over and push an on button, sounds like a great idea!

Enjoy the weekend, stay safe!


Nov 27, 2019


I used to!  A lot.  Being the only female in the all male accounting department back in the early 70's, I decided to start swearing like a fiend and smoking like a chimney to fit in.  That continued until 20 or so years ago.  Well, not the swearing.  As long as I stay calm and dry, we're OK.  Unless I am bewildered, astonished, surprised, shocked, inept, run into a mannequin, bang into a pole that should not be there, tip over a display, or any number of things.  Then all bets are off.  Hypnosis liberated me from cigarettes, not sure it would help with the mouth problem.  It's not difficult to restrict my vocabulary in front of family because most visits are pleasant and do not trigger the tongue.  I never used profanity around my parents and was uncomfortable if a movie we were watching contained that fricking word.  In private, at home, let it fly.  But restaurants and stores are not the place.  Unless you run into a mannequin, bang into a pole that shouldn't be there, tip over a display.

The smoking today is widespread.  Every room on the first floor.  I always start the turkey at 450 degrees for 15 minutes and then turn it down.  This time, I did not heat the pan before adding the bird and we are smoking.  Big time.  Nothing like having ear piercing alarms go off (that falls under "surprised") and cats scatter while you try to turn the damn things off and can't (that falls under "inept").  Needless to say, that spew made the dead bird roll over in his pan.

The boys were peaceful until then.  I've been close enough to old man Bud to know that Nitzy's position is not a good one.

So before I start the pies, I thought it best to relax a little with two of my favorites.  Vanilla Birch candle and Nutella, and what Coni calls a cup of "damn good".  What could possibly go wrong?  Probably a bird flying in the open windows to get rid of the smoke, the brats chasing it throughout the house, creating another spew.

Happy Thanksgiving!!


Did you see this?

Of course you have.  I haven't until today while watching floss tube.  Isn't this different and a really nice addition to Christmas stitchery?  I may order.  I would do it on a darker gingham which of course, I sold.

Nothing much going on.  For some reason, I can't stay awake, even in the afternoon.  Staying up until midnight was my normal routine, now I struggle to make it to ten.  I look forward to a day without an appointment of some sort but that won't be until the second week of December.  Well, not really.  I need to see the rheumatologist and get injections from my orthopedic.  I can't believe how painful my joints are becoming and really limiting what I can do in such short time.  Between that, my thinning hair allowing my scalp to show, and the vicious return of hot flashes, I'm not in a very festive holiday mood.

Petey is loving his home and is getting closer to the house when sunning himself.  It's so cute, as soon as I open the back door he runs to his shelter and waits for a treat or food.  Problem is developing with Nitzy.  He just won't leave him alone and is starting to fight. 
Petey went after a cat I have seen here before and I heard the fight in the woods.  But he won't attack the brats, just an outsider.  Bud is doing his yoga while they both enjoyed the warmth of the sun yesterday.  This is about as close as they get, Nit gets right in Petey's face.  I think he was someone's indoor cat, but it will be a long time before he comes in here.  He is probably loaded with fleas, needs to see a vet, and until they all get along, I don't want to create a situation.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I can't wait for Saturday when all the Black Friday ads that have been running for a month are OVER!!!


Nov 23, 2019

Family tags

Hi folks.  I am not a frequent Facebook visitor, but yesterday showed me that I should not be at all.  Once again, someone that I follow from a stitching group posted a horrific photo from an animal torture site of a bound and defenseless puppy, not going into details.  It seems they all come from a country know for being disgusting human beings when it comes to dogs and cats.  May they all receive the same acts to them as they burn in hell.  Don't you realize you are fueling their audience which in turn creates more videos?  And shows repulsive people new ways to torture?  Stop it.  

I sealed and completed a few tags and tried them on the 3' tree.  I do think mixing the tags with other ornaments would be best.  But a light bulb went off.  Wouldn't it be sweet to have a family tree?  Between old photos and the thousands on phones, they could be edited for size, scanned for printing, or copies made from actual photos and reduced in size if necessary.  I taped a bunch to a sheet of paper and made a copy at Staples so I could make notes, an easy way to keep the originals safe.  I think my mom would have loved to have a little tree like that, she enjoyed going through old photos.  What a special gift for those with only memories of the past.  Just a thought!

If you want to try this, make sure you spray the printed papers with Krylon 1311 matte sealer before gluing or applying a permanent finish.  I don't use Modge Podge, not sure if that would work as well as the Krylon to prevent ink from smearing.

Have a great weekend!

Nov 22, 2019

Playing tag

Carole moved her appt. up so Chris could take her before work.  Both hips are bone on bone, her bottom vertebrae are tilted and fused, nothing can be done about either.  The only options are injections to ease the pain, and steroids.  She is not a candidate for any type of surgery.

I decided to try a few tags before the printer runs out of ink or dies again.  They may create a sweet little tree mixed with other ornaments.  Not sure exclusively would be as nice, but since the tree is very small, who knows?  I have other designs to print, but I am liking the simple samplers and bugle boy.  We can't cut the angled top off since this thin plywood splinters easily.  Maybe try a few with a stained wood top exposed.  Probably not.

I had to clean Petey's box today and now he is afraid to go back in!!  I think all cats are mental.


A good day to drive

Gloomy, deary, no sun.  We took Carole two days ago for xrays of the knee, took all afternoon.  Yesterday to the doctor, found out the mechanical knee is OK, may be the hip.  Went directly back to the center for additional xrays, took all afternoon.  Today she is to return to the doc for results and I can drive her myself (Mark is golfing and there is no sun), should be home by 3!!  Between her appointments and mine, it seems I've become one of those people that complain about their weeks being dominated by doctors.  What a difference one injection has made.

So along with the dreary day and light rain, comes three brats.
One atop the grain bin.

One on the ruined chair.

And the little ruinator herself on the sofa.
Petey is enjoying his shelter and spends most of his day snoozing.  We can't seem to keep an opossum from invading his space though and I need to remove his food by 4 pm.  I tried leaving edibles for the unwelcome visitor but he/she still checks out Petey's place too.

These little tags are the beginning of a new ornament project.  I've had it in my mind (along with little else of importance) to use my sampler label snippets on the small unlit trees.  We'll see how that goes as soon as I get a free afternoon.  Hopefully, pretty damn good.

Have a great day!!


Nov 20, 2019


Look what came up on Ebay.  
The most gorgeous project, complete unopened kit, $390.00

And I finally finished that damn tree!!  What a hassle it has been, and after many stitches were moved to avoid collisions with branches, it looks just as wonky as the original.  Done!!  Moving on.

You know the cold weather is upon us when these brats decide to come inside for the day.  So far, no blood has been drawn, and I will keep my distance.

Have a great day!!


Nov 18, 2019

And now, a knee

Hello folks.  Sale started at 8 this evening.  I posted the others on Samplers Through Time and they sold rather quickly.  And now I know how!  I will always offer here first and then list them on that FB site.

Something happened in the last month to Carole's replaced knee and it got much worse today.  It is unstable, painful, and certainly a problem.  The cement could have loosened, an infection could be brewing, her femur could be cracked, and the list goes on.  There is no way with her weak heart that a revision surgery could be done, even with a spinal.  I get tired of giving instructions of who and when to call, what to set up, and what to ask for.  Why doesn't anyone think for themselves and know what should be done?  Mark said I know it all but that's no reason.  So tomorrow morning after my ultrasound, I may need to change my haircut time and get her to the xray.  Almost afraid to get too much cut since the thinning is so noticeable.  McD iced coffee on the way home. 

As for stitching, I am taking advantage of times when the hand is working and pain is less, but still want to learn the left.  I've seen a few smalls that I would like to do, good projects to try it out.  This sampler is too large with all the hanging linen and would make it more difficult. 

We got a few trees down from the attic.  None are the newer realistic needle style and I do want a new slim, prelit tree.  Maybe a search online will yield one but it's iffy when you can't really see and feel.  I'm giving away two 6' pencil trees and the 2' tall ceramic with the interior light will go to Carole (it was Mom's).
I do like all the whites out this year, and this one on Hayneedle really caught my eye.  Gorgeous!!

Christmas will be quicker this year since Thanksgiving is late.  So many early sales it's hard to keep up, and lots of items (including a few trees I tried to order) are already out of stock.  Oh well.  I don't have a lot of gifts to buy anyway.

Hope your week started great!


Nov 17, 2019

Tomorrow is Monday

I thought it was to be Sunday.  Since I am a day late, dollar short, and 25 pounds over, the sale will start Monday at 8 pm for the next batch of charts.  
Offered on the For SALE tab.

A question for stitchers.  Since the Sjogren's sudden onset has triggered Rheumatoid Arthritis that I did not have before, usage of my right hand is rapidly deteriorating.  RA does not present at this level this quickly, but just as the third auto immune is developing, none are because of natural tendency so the progression is not normal.  

So my question .... is anyone an ambidextrous needleworker?  Some days I cannot hold the needle and just for the giggles, I tried with my left hand.  I do not believe, if using a frame for jab and pull, it would be as difficult as writing or other tasks.  This medication takes a minimum of three months to take effect and even then, it may not, so I'm thinking ahead.  Has anyone changed their stitching hand?

Hope your weekend went well.  


Nov 16, 2019

For Vickie

A very quick visit to Kraynak's today, mainly because I cannot handle crowds.  No where to park, wall to wall people, most oblivious to the other customers whose path they are blocking.  They just stand there!!   The tree areas weren't bad, but the other greenhouses were packed.  Saw a young child obviously affected by chemo and that did it.  My hot flashes may have dropped a few notches down the Scoville heat scale, but the touchy emotions are still raging.

Frozen 2 is taking over, even Christmas trees!  I thought Vickie would like to see the pink.

Aisle after aisle, row after row.  The larger trees are these four long rows.

Regular and smaller sizes are a few steps down.

The sides of this area have greenhouse tables filled with the tabletop sizes ranging from miniature to three foot.  White and silver seem to be a theme this year from ornaments to trees.  Two other greenhouses are filled with ornaments, garland, stockings, decorations of any kind.  The store area is all toys and sports collections, and the first greenhouse is all lighting.  If it's made, they have it.  Yes I've shown Kraynak's before, but it's all we have around here so you'll have to allow my indulgence!  I so miss Pat Catan's.

And with hundreds of trees, did not find what I would like.  Mark is not surprised.

In case you are a fan of Bath & Body Works and don't receive their emails, today only they are offering their lotions (regular $13.50) for $2.95 (in store or online).


Nov 15, 2019

More samplers coming this weekend -

I'll post the date of the sale a day before, wanted to give a sneak peek.  I need to transfer the others that have not sold to Samplers Through Time.  Never posted there before, I'm not a frequent Facebooker, so it may be a real screw up.  But I'll give it a try!!

Sarah Pope is a very large folded paper which has some damage at the crease folds.

Nov 14, 2019


This afternoon, as their final delivery, the oil truck arrived at Carole's house.  I contacted our state representative and he took action immediately.  She will sleep well tonight!  She also received good news about her blood work.  After changing the Coreg to another drug her kidney function is better than ever.  Her doctor (Cleveland Clinic) has pharmacist associates on his staff to monitor drug interactions, suggest changes, and evaluate numbers in blood work that could relate to drugs.  They call every week to monitor if she has any symptoms and is adjusting.  No improvement in the heart function but maybe given time on the correct drugs, her efficiency will increase.  Our local and new cardiologist has left the area after less than six months.  Here we go again.

Petey sits on his patio and stares at the house when he wants more food.  He cries and cries when I open the door and start his way, and then the hisses ensue.  He seems to want inclusion in the brat pack but they are now ignoring him, instead of visiting or laying in the grass together as they once did.  Missy wants nothing to do with him at all and won't go near him.  She is tiny but a spitfire and has attacked and fought with large males before. 

When BBW had their $4.95 sale, I ordered six pillow sprays for Carole's club exchange.  I don't know why they set a $5 limit, but it's a hassle every year to find a nice gift for that price.  Combine the money and buy a toy for a drive!  Anyway, this is how they came in.  No packing material and each lost the spray nozzle, two stems were broken off and can't be repaired.  Now I have to make another trip to exchange, I'm not taking a chance on another damaged shipment.  Very surprised at this.

Had no trouble getting the certified birth certificate, but left the Real ID office since we would never have been taken care of before closing time.  Wait times are usually around 3 hours.  Took a few photos with my $5 phone of the courthouse.  The marble steps and railings, brass and wood, skylight dome.  The offices are all lined with beautiful built in wood shelves and drawers and bins, mortised brass Victorian door hardware, coffered or beamed ceilings.  Huge marble staircases lead to these upper floors circling the rotunda, all courtrooms and jury rooms. There are several very large ornate homes nearby and I wonder how many have preserved the original features.
Another week gone by.  Summer is getting closer.  Have a great weekend!


Nov 12, 2019

Sales and shines

No Carole did not get the oil today, and when the oil company employee finally got through to the supervisor, she was told that Carole did not not apply.  Outright Gdamn lie but it covers their incompetence and can't be proven otherwise unless you record your conversations.  In response to a few personal emails about this, please read this 2015 CBS report, just one of many.
There was an episode of I Love Lucy where a civil service clerk tells her “This is a civil service job.  If you want to get me fired, you’ll have to wait ‘till I die”.   I won't harp about this again!

I purchased a bold Monet necklace (50% off plus a coupon!) but was disappointed at the very bright and foil looking gold tone.  So I sprayed with my Rustoleum Matte finish enamel and now it's gorgeous!!  Toned the bright shiny gold to a softer polished finish, 100% better than before.

Another shiner is the sun on snow.  I thought driving in the sun was unbearable but today reminded me this combo is impossible!

And the charts are
listed on the For SALE tab.


Tonight's charts

Hi there.  Sale will be tonight at 8 pm and prices include shipping in a hot pink plastic envelope.  I will move to Sampler World if they don't sell here.  

I wasn't going to mention this but this ship has sailed many times already, so what the hell.  My sister is poverty level and gets help from the state of PA once a year with her heating.  She has an oil furnace.  There is a fund called the Crisis Fund that will almost fill her tank, but you must be completely out or almost out of fuel to qualify.  A gentleman that worked at our local welfare office took care of this every year for her and recently retired.  In keeping with the ethics of that generation, he did his job well.  His replacement does not answer her phone.  Ever.  So Carole started leaving messages for her over a week ago.  No replies.  Carole called the state office which was very helpful and said she would take care of the inexcusable actions.  A day later, the local girl called and stated she was informed by the state and had no other notice (she doesn't listen to her messages obviously).  Carole was as always, pleasant and courteous, while being informed that all is taken care of and she will get the oil delivery within the mandated 48 hours.  That was last Tuesday.  Still won't answer her phone or messages and Carole has to walk on eggshells around these employees.  She has had no heat in her house for over a week, except for a small electric heater and the fireplace during the day.  Yesterday she called the oil company, they know her from years of contact, and was informed that NO ONE had notified them and she was not yet approved for the Fund nor were they notified to deliver.  I want to personally rip into this worker but of course, I will be called a name and Carole's account will suffer.  There are employees that do excellent work and thank God for that, but around here, we have a load of lazy people that only take care of who they want to, are related to, or friends with.  Not a damn thing we can do about it.  The woman at the oil company is planning to speak with this girl's supervisor (probably her aunt-they are all related), and plans to take care of this for her today.  So far, the worker (and I use that term loosely) is still not answering her phone and messages left by Carole and the oil office are not being answered.  If I would have paid for the tank, she would lose the benefit, and I already take care of the second and third fills.  I am calling our state representative who is always ready to help and letting him know.

Mark needs a certified copy of his birth certificate for Real ID and he has been calling for a week, never less than a 120 minute hold time, over 100 messages in queue, same recording every single day.  He will take a ride to the nearest office and get the information we need in order to submit a request which could be answered in a brief call.  What do people with work hours longer than this out of town office do when they need something?  They open an hour later and close an hour earlier than standard offices, and you can't get through to ask a simple question.

You would think by now I would be willing to accept his horse crap but I am not.  Managers no longer accept accountability for their employees, workers no longer accept responsibility for their work.  I hope your state and local area don't have the issues we do here.

My tree branches are now all correct for this tree.  The second one whose branches I transplanted to this one, should not be as difficult for me.  Lots of errors in this one and no one can tell, but I can't wait to move on to another area!  Once I do, I am trying the hoop again, but the 12" instead of the 14".  

Could not wait to visit HL and Michael's Christmas sections, so Mark drove me yesterday.  I didn't find much at all that was colonial/primitive for ornaments.  My Michael's is small and there was very little of anything for the holidays.  HL had tons of gorgeous pieces for white trends, but I am not starting over with another tree.  Lauren might, and she is an enabler, but I am resisting.

Hope your week goes well.  

Will post charts this evening.


Nov 10, 2019

Veteran's Day

With gratitude, respect, and prayers for those serving, have served, and especially those that never made it home.  Young men sleeping in far off lands, away from family and loved ones, many whose grave sites were never visited.  Alone for eternity, surrounded by fellow soldiers of the same fate.  Mothers and fathers and spouses never got to touch the stone bearing their name, the memorial of their sacrifice, kneel on the hallowed ground to pray they did not suffer, and honor their short life.  

To all veterans, here and abroad, for your service and sacrifice, thank you.


A single nut of two trees

Guess who the nut is?  When I had a house guest, I removed my stitching bag and all chart pages to another room.  The messy one that all the extra furniture is in.  When I was able to stitch again, I put the project back by my chair, and the second group came to visit.  Moved it again.  Since that one was unplanned, it was a mad dash to ready their bedroom, remove our personal toiletries, and rid the house once again.  Well I must have just grabbed and stashed because all was stuffed into the bag, no magnetic board, no Magma.

Seeing the chart papers only, not a full photo, I did not remember there are two trees.  The trunk was almost completed, only two branches on one side, so trying to stitch the other tree branches onto it was, shall we say, frustrating.  It was only once that I used the wrong page but that was enough to create chaos and throw it all off, never realizing the placement was from a different page!!

I now have the correct page in the Magma, and added colored numbers to others to make it easier for my frazzled ishkaboobled brain.  I originally kept them loose and together because I was continuing on to the next page rather than leave a motif or word half done.  I do not like stitching this way and prefer to have the entire project on one page, I don't care if it's 5' long.

A few other charts I will be offering soon.

And I came across this oldie from Ewe & Eye.  It's sweet isn't it?

I am considering an Essamplaire purchase of this tiny needlebook.  Would I ever stitch it?  My goodness you can spend an afternoon browsing their offers! 

But today it's cloudy (I can drive!) and I plan to visit Michaels and Joann's for a little shopping.  I think I've only driven 5 times since this diagnosis, light sensitivity is unbearable.  My doctor(s) is backing me on a lawyer getting involved, haven't decided yet, but I am so miserable and will be for life so I am giving this serious consideration.

Hope your weekend is splendid and snow free!!


Nov 9, 2019

Coming up for sale

Essamplaire (some OOP) charts, never used, never will be.  I will decide if Ebay, here, or FB Samplers Through Time.  I am not a member or aware of any other group for selling strictly samplers.  Much easier through Ebay but .... probably just here.  I will offer these Tuesday evening 11/12, may add a few before then.
Photos are all crooked because I was too lazy to remove from plastic sleeve and was getting a reflection.  Prices will include shipping and be reasonable as always, but if you are international and interested in any, please let me know and I will adjust the shipping.

Lise Bagg - I would need to change the colors and tone this down, maybe all red or rich blue?  The chart states 12" x 5" on 30 count.  The stitch count is closer to 80 x 180, not 120 x 240 as the chart states.  The dividing bands over the large eyelet alphabet are both done in tent stitch.  I'm out of here.

The S.S. Sampler - If I center the words and change the dividing band to a solid color beneath them, this would be more pleasing to my dry eyes.  I have not found a stitched example online done on a softer shade of linen which would also help, but I don't want to bother changing anything.  Did I just say that? 

Mahala Jane Hamilton - GET OUT!!  Could not stitch a border like this.

Mary Margaret Mallet - this border could easily accept placement errors, but it's still a border.  Adios.

Betsy Gill - not a thing wrong with you Betsy, but I don't like stitching script letters.

Elizabeth Jane Turner - a beautiful sampler that I know I will never start.

I know it's not necessary to explain my reasons, but it helps me to relinquish rather than hold on.  After seeing the Instagram photos of stitchers' stash and enormous collections of charts, mine are one drop in a full bucket.  But I am not interested in storing items of no use to me.  I've been mentioning chart reduction for quite some time, I need to follow through!  I feel better now.

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