Friday, September 28, 2007

Rest in Peace

My Mother In Law passed away last night. It was quick and peaceful. She had a long life that had become hard for her at the end so I am glad there was no pain for her. I wanted to share this picture of her when she was much younger and so happy along with being full of dreams for the future instead of a more recent one where you can see how tired she was becoming. She often talked of going home to see her beloved husband who passed away several years ago.

Rest in Peace.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Nature's Bounty

Some of the wonderful berries in my yard that the birds love to snack on! These are only a few of the varieties I have planted for them.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Birds and Trees

Where do Christmas trees come from? Why, Christmas Tree Farms, of course! This picture was taken earlier this summer on one of our day trips and I totally forgot about it with so many other things going on! We saw oodles of Christmas Tree Farms like this one while in the mountains and it really put us in an early holiday mood! Ho Ho Ho!

Time to update my Wishlist and some of the links on my sidebar!

Harold is working extra hours for awhile. Until this job is finished my calendar is totally turned around for awhile! Sunday seems like Monday. Thursday seems like Saturday. Monday seems like Friday. Hopefully this won't last very long. For awhile I have to find recipes to make for dinner that I can fix early enough for me and the boys to eat and being able to reheat (or keep hot) for Harold when he gets home a few hours later without that stale "nuked" taste.

Cooking for the birds! Yep, you read right! Even our feathered friends enjoy a nice homebaked meal from time to time! Next time you have a little time to spare, try out this recipe. Your backyard buddies will thank you!

Seed Cornbread
Get a package of cornbread mix.
Prepare it as directed on the package except add an extra egg (egg shells crumbled into the mixture also.)
Add 1 c. bird seed. (I often add some dried fruit and nuts as well)
If the mixture is too dry, add a little more water.
Bake as directed on package. Cool.

Cut into serving size pieces. Freeze in small freezer bags until needed. Defrost and crumble into pieces onto a platform feeder and watch your birds devour it!

I am looking to comfort myself with a nice order. Cross stitch. Scrapbooking. Maybe a little of both?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Open House

I have a thing for houses. I love to use them in my decor. Pillows, wall hangings, and more. I also have a love for birds (big surprise), small wildlife and trees. Of course they all seem to tie into together. The backyard of our HOUSE is always busy with BIRDS & SMALL WILDLIFE because of all the TREES! Any wonder I want to do a wall for each of these! YIKES!

I have recently set a goal for myself of October 10th to complete The Willow Tree Sampler so that I can put this piece aside and begin several new starts. I am at the half way mark so I should be able to meet this goal or get very close to finishing.

October 1st, I will begin a 30 Day Journal over at Peek ( with some prompts for an insight into my everyday life and the things often taken for granted.

I recently joined the Crazy-Exchange at It looks like a lot of fun and I am anxious to get started!

Monday, September 24, 2007


It's Monday and I have nothing to show. In all honesty, I will be glad when this month is over. Possibly a new month will give me the feeling of a new beginning which is what I need right now.

Even though it has been exactly one week today since we took Whiner for his last visit to the vet, I feel much better. I still cry from time to time but I know in my heart he is better off with no anguish. Now it just a matter of getting myself moving again and back on the track of life.

I did go outside yesterday and roamed the yard with my camera and took some pictures. I puttered around the garden area and put out some mums for some extra Fall color and put fresh wter in the bird bath.The temps sure didn't feel like Fall but the colors of the season were beginning to make an appearance. Sweater days are not far behind.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Section One

Is almost complete. By the time I do another update, I should be well into section two after a run to pick up some needed thread colors.

As I worked on And A Forest Grew this week, I felt a certain peace. I even found myself smiling. For some reason it managed to help comfort me. So much of it has reminded me of Whiner and how he loved to walk in the backyard near the wooded area with the birds and other small wildlife critters.

For those who have inquired, I am starting to do better. I definitely feel better since bringing Whiner's ashes back home. Like Harold said "this is where he belongs". His memorial stone arrived yesterday and has been set out. The area looks lovely (which is also a comfort).

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Time Heals

It has definitely been a rough week. For some reason there was a delay about Whiner's cremation and I wasn't able to pick up his ashes to bring home until today. Very upsetting as I had been told they would be ready for me to come and get the day after his passing. But he is home now where he belongs. The picture is of the memorial I fixed up out back in the area he loved best. The flowers are not in full bloom yet nor has his memorial stone arrived but time will take care of all of this.

I have tried to do some scrapbooking but it has just been too hard for me. This was a hobby that Whiner shared with me. He always wanted me to scrap on the bed so that he could lay near me and play with the scraps of paper I would discard. I tried to scrapbook in a different area but there was no inspiration. When I moved my supplies to the bed, all I could do was cry. It will take awhile before I am able to resume this hobby. I know that time will heal this terrible loss I feel right now.

I have been able to do more and more stitching the past few days. Whiner wasn't involved in this hobby as much (basically only laying at my feet) so it easier for me to do without the heavy flood of memories and emotions.

I realize that last week I had announced that I would begin several new pieces but considering all that has happened recently, I am going to post pone these for awhile and work on what I have already have in progress along with some smalls I would like to do. For now, these are more than enough for me - at least until my energy level begins to rise again.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Days and Nights

The past several days and nights have definitely been extremely hard for me. Especially the nights. I am so used to feeling Whiner snuggled up against me as I sleep and I have had a hard time sleeping without him. I am still feeling an empty kind of tired but I know that I must begin to move on with life. It will be slow for awhile. I have had many friends reach out to me during this time which has meant a lot to me. Thank you all.

I did do a little stitching last night. Not much but it was a beginning after this long break. It wasn't enough to bother taking a picture of but hopefully I can begin doing a little more each day now.

We have been having such beautiful Fall days this week and this is a perfect recipe for enjoying in the Autumn.

Caramel Apple Dip

8 oz. Cream Cheese softened
1/2 c. caramel ice cream topping
1/4 c. honey
3 - 4 green and red apples, cored and sliced

In a medium serving bowl, combine cream cheese, caramel topping, honey and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. Beat until smooth. Store in refrigerator til chilled. Sprinkle with cinnamon and serve with apple slices. Makes 2 cups.

Monday, September 17, 2007


Goodbye, my little sweetheart. This morning I held you in my arms as you fell into a sleep that will last forever. It was fast and peaceful. I cried as I watched your tiny body lay on my lap, taking its last breaths. When I came home, I stood on the deck looking at the area you loved to walk among the bird feeders and a wren began to sing. I believe in my heart it was singing for you. You are gone from our lives but never from our hearts.

You came into our lives quite by accident. It had been decided there would be no more dogs which was a decision I intended to change someday but when we were given the opportunity to take the boys over to a friends to see some new puppies, I had no idea I would fall in love. It was agreed that the boys could have a puppy but it was I who ended up choosing which one to bring home. As I held you, my heart melted. It was you or nothing. You came home with us and won the hearts of everyone. You and I have shared the most special bond and you have been my third child.

It was Michael who decided that you needed a middle name and was allowed to give it to you. Whiner Leon Human. It worked and there was no argument from us about it. Your full name was used often especially when you were bad.

As you got older, your sight failed and your hearing vanished. Your mind become a clouded fuzz. It became harder and harder to care for your needs. It became apparent the time was nearing the end. It took along time for everyone in the family to accept this fact and come to terms to life without you.

Thank you --

for loving us unconditionally.

for all the nights you would sleep curled up next to me.

for protecting me when Harold worked odd hours.

for missing me whenever I went out to run errands.

for making us laugh.

for the wonderful memories I have.

for being the wonderful valued family member you were.

I love you and I will always miss you.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

New Beginnings and Sad Goodbyes

It's a new week and lots of new things going on! New chairs, new cross stitch starts begin this week, new glasses (I decided to get a second pair in large frames!), a new TV, my new rug has been shipped and a new stand for the TV. I hate to write about everything in one blog post and possibly miss some great details so I will spread out everything over the course of this week!

I love our new chairs! Especially mine! The print is so yummy and the picture doesn't do it justice! I bought that wonderful stitching basket a while back on sale with the intentions of putting it beside my chair when it arrived. Harold was a sweetie and installed the wall lamp to give me some extra light while I stitch! I can vision many projects being worked on (and finished) in this chair!

Over the weekend we made a quick Wally World stop and I grabbed several BIG handfuls of DMC that was on clearance! The selection was already mighty thin but I was able to get 30 skeins of floss for $3.00! A lot of greens which will probably come in handy on AAFG! What a great buy!

We finally got rain that was needed so desperately and it was extremely welcome! I'm sure the plants are much happier with a fresh rain shower than with a substitute soaking via the hose!

We went to the lake over the weekend. My BIL and SIL have boat and took us out. What a great time! I am already looking forward to going out on the lake with them again!

On a sad note, tomorrow we will be taking Whiner into the vet's to be put down after 17 years of loving companionship. I have already done so much of my grieving as I have known for quite awhile this was inevitable. It just took awhile longer for other family members to finally accept it. The thought of walking through a house without his presence is very upsetting.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Full Circle

I promised a better picture of me in my new glasses. This is about as good as it's gonna get! I really do miss my larger frames and am seriously thinking about getting a second pair so that I can have both looks as my mood desires.

I have been asked if I still scrapbook since I talk about stitching quite a bit now. DEFINITELY, I still scrap! For me, scrapbooking is a daytime hobby while cross stitching is a night time hobby. Scrapping is about action with photography and journaling. Stitching is relaxing and calming. The perfect way to unwind in the evenings.

So what are my new stitching starts going to be? The new starts are marked by a * and will begin next week. All have a reserved spot waiting for them to be hung up!

Mon --- Willow Tree Sampler (I am nearing the half way mark on this piece)

*Tues -- Because Nice Matters*

*Wed - various smalls for ornaments, pin cushions, pillows, ect.*

Thurs - And a Forest Grew (LOTS left to do!)

*Fri - Matter's Choice*

Sat - Free Stitch

Sun - Free Stitch

Our new chairs will be delivered sometime today so I should have a picture of those to share by tomorrow! Also, we heard from the warranty place about our TV and were given a voucher to pick out a brand new television! Hopefully we will be going to the store to do that today and I will have a picture of it to post as well. A NEW tv to watch while I sit and stitch in my NEW chair! Can life get any better? *wink wink*

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Found a fun test to share

Your Brain is Blue

Of all the brain types, yours is the most mellow.
You tend to be in a meditative state most of the time. You don't try to think away your troubles.
Your thoughts are realistic, fresh, and honest. You truly see things as how they are.

You tend to spend a lot of time thinking about your friends, your surroundings, and your life.

Nature's Bounty

These pictures were taken when we took a day trip to Grandfather Mountain this summer. So much beautiful nature. What a great place to refresh your soul and spirit! And yes, we were at the top of the mountain and the clouds danced around our ankles as we walked!

A lot of people have asked just how close I was to the Mountain Lion to get this picture. LOL! Actually -- TOO CLOSE! Even though you are walking above the animal's habitat area, it is not caged. These mountain lions CAN JUMP HIGH enough to get out if provoked! While we were admiring these beauties, Harold turned to me and said "That mountain lion sure is staring mighty hard at you, Sherry". He wasn't staring at me but at the little girl next to me (about 3 years old) that kept screaming with an excited high pitch voice "I see Tigers! I see Tigers!" Maybe he didn't like her high pitched screaming or maybe he didn't appreciate the fact she mistook him for a Tiger. Whatever the reason, I moved away from her! There is a reason they have up signs that say DO NOT TEASE, SCREAM AT OR PROVOKE THE MOUNTAIN LIONS.

Stitchy News! My JSC Ornament issue arrived yesterday! Lots of drooling while I thumbed through it!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Yum Yum

No stitching updates this week because of too many other things keeping me busy right now. But I did place an order at Peek ( after a long absence! *BIG HAPPY GRIN*

What a great recipe and so easy to make! This is a Fall favorite for me and Harold!
Homemade Oyster Stew

4 cups of whole milk
1 can of oysters, drained
1/4 stick butter
salt and pepper
several dashes of Worsterchire sauce

Melt butter in sauce pan. Add remaining ingredients and heat. A delicious and easy hot homemade soup to serve with crackers and a sandwich! Serves 3. Can be doubled or tripled or quadrupled! LOL

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Home stretch

I ordered the rug for the living area and it is pictured at the side! Not the one I originally intended to get but I have drooled over this one for several years and it went on sale at a price to fit my budget! It feels like we are on the home stretch to getting this place fixed up -- finally! Alot of things are either not in our budget right now or not possible to do because of the way the house was built but we have done what we can and are happy! We are doing the best with what we have and who can ask for more!

I spent yesterday hanging the rest of the items back on the walls. We got the last few shelves back up last night. A few new things were put up and a few empty spaces remain because of the spots have been reserved for future cross stitch pieces (some in progress and others that will be started soon)! Stop by Friday to find out what my new starts are! Nothing like a new look!

I feel like my stitching has suffered the past week with turning the house upside down to paint and then all the time to put everything back! I am hoping the furniture store calls today and says the chairs are ready to deliver! A stitching chair is just what I need to get back on track! *big grin*

I want to start a new mini album and decided to do one from one of our day trips this summer. I will still have more day trips to scrap along with plenty of other themes but this will be a fun one to start with!

The mail man brought my new Gooseberry Christmas book for my preview. I will definitely be keeping it!

Monday, September 10, 2007

A New Start

No progress updates on the Willow Tree Sampler. Painting has taken priority this week! But I am getting ready to begin several new starts this week! Stayed tuned to find out what they are!

It's a new week. Harold's vacation time went by too fast. I have had some issues to deal with that kept me from enjoying my normal routine. I am at a point now where I feel I can resume my life. So I start this morning with my old and beloved routines -- coffee, blogs and Peek!

I looked though my stack of charts over the weekend that I still want to stitch along with the list of those I still want to purchase! Yikes! Where in heaven's name would I put all of these?!! We would have to move to a MUCH larger house with ALOT more walls! LOL! It seems I have made plans about doing certain themes and walls. Good intentions but maybe I should just stick with doing pieces as I choose them. No pressure!

Poor Aida. So many people have abandoned you for different types of stitching fabrics but you hold a special place in my heart. I learned to stitch with you and you stuck by my side all those years I had such a hard time stitching because of my eyes. When I was able to take my stitching up again, you and your friends were waiting in my sewing basket to greet me! Maybe I just have a soft place in my heart for the underdogs. Sort of like the plants I buy at the store that are close to dying from neglect. I must bring them home and try to revive them with love and care. You will always have a place here with me, dear Aida! One of my scrapbooking friends, Linda ( sent me a wonderful package full of Aida scraps and larger pieces! These will be great for ornaments and smalls! Thank you, Linda!

I am so ready for cooler weather! This awful hot, stale heat is keeping my birds at bay. They are only venturing out early in the mornings before the heat gets unbearable! Right now, taking pictures seems futile because everything is either dried up from the heat or in hiding from the heat!

Paint update! What a fiasco! We started too late in the week. We were continually being side tracked and interrupted thus having to stop which delayed our progress even more! Then when we finally got started good, we discovered the paint we bought didn't cover as good as it should so back to the store for a different brand of paint and a new start!

The living and dining areas are finished. The hall will have to wait until a free weekend. We have been busy putting things back in their places. A big job and it may take a while to completely finish. But the rooms are painted and ready for the new chairs that should be delivered this week and the new TV we hope to be getting very soon! Hopefully I will get some pictures later in the week!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

East Coast Gal

create your own personalized map of the USA

Gee, do you reckon I am pretty much east coast bound? I need to travel some! Westward Ho! I found this fun map and you can see states you have visited, countries and more.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

New Look

Before. After. The larger frames are how I wore my glasses for years. I got tired of the big look and the way they felt so heavy on my face and switched to a smaller wire frame. Also with Transition (turn to sunglasses outside) and no line bifocal lenses. I may have made a mistake getting the transition lenses. I like them but just don't know if I like them enough to get again. Next time I may get separate sun glasses but for now, these will be fine. You can't see it in the picture but there is BLING down each side. Love those little sparkles! I haven't had no line bifocals in quite awhile but remember enjoying them so I am really happy to get them again! I think the new frames are going to take more adjust to than the new lenses. One minute I love them and the next minute I wish I had gotten big frames again! LOL! Not the best picture but it gives you an idea and I hope to get a better picture later!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to my husband!

I didn't do as much on AAFG the past few days as I had hoped to get done. Possibly because Harold is taking some time off and we have either been busy around the house or taking off in the car! That's alright but I will wait until next week to post a picture of my progress so that by then I will have had a chance to do even more and it will look like I have really done a whole lot! LOL!

I have decided that when we finish painting the two major rooms this week that I would like to designate two walls for special cross stitch pieces! In the dining area, a forest wall. where cross stitch pieces of trees, birds (I have a lot of charts that will fit into this category) and forest critters will reside. In the living area, a Home Sweet Home wall. This wall will be home to cross stitch pieces with houses or anything homey! These will be the two walls I would like to concentrate on for awhile and should keep me busy even longer! Especially along with all my other projects! I have wonderful intentions and hope to carry through with them!

Awhile back, our local fabric shop (and where I used to work) had some cross stitch fabric on sale. Aida 14 count. Ten Yards. 60 inches wide. Rolled on a tube. $10. What a deal! It sold out in no time but I was lucky enough to grab one of them!

Painting update! The ceilings in the hall, living and dining areas are done! We really should be on the home stretch by now instead of just beginning! I wonder if we will be able to finish this up by the end of the week. Probably so. We just have the walls to paint now and then put everything back! Everyone had best help to keep the walls really clean because I don't want to have to paint again for a long time! It's too much work to take everything down, prep, paint and hang everything back up!

Today's picture is of a lone flower growing by the side of the road.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Testing the Water

I refilled the bird bath yesterday evening which I try to remember to do on a regular basis. This weather has been so hot and stale lately! So I wasn't at all surprised when I saw a group of Mockingbirds this morning taking turns getting cooled off!

Harold and I had a nice anniversary. We were bold and tried out a pizzeria we had never been to. Different and very good! He had the Greek pizza and I had the Mexican pizza!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Happy Days

Several years ago, Harold came home with a fancy new projection TV. Within the past several months, we have been seeing growing numbers of "blotches" on the screen when the TV is turned on. Greens, blues, reds, pinks and thin pin stripes all across the screen. Luckily he had bought the extended warranty. We contacted the company and after they sent out a repair man to estimate the cost, we were told it cost too much to repair it and they would be giving us a voucher to replace the TV with. Nice! A brand new TV and we have some ideas of what we would like to get this time around!

This is a great Autumn recipe or can be special enough to save and fix for holidays!

Crock Pot Pork Lion Roast
3-4 lb pork lion roast, well trimmed
salt & pepper
several dashes of soy sauce
4 to 6 apples, quartered
1/2 large bottle apple juice
3 Tbl brown sugar
1 tsp ground ginger

Place apple quarters on bottom of CP. Place roast on top. Sprinkle w/salt & pepper. Combine apple juice, sugar, soy sauce & ginger. Spoon over roast, covering entire top. Cover & cook on LOW 10-12 hrs. TASTY! :o)

Happy 31st anniversary to us! WOW! That REALLY is a LONG time! LOL!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Fresh. New. Clean!

Yesterday we ordered what will be my chair for the living area. I wanted a different fabric on it than was on it at the store so it has to be special ordered and should be in within the next 10 days (I hope). The chair that will be Harold's is in stock at the store so about mid week, we will go and pay for it so they can deliver it.

Today we start painting! I walked around the rooms last night taking things down from the walls and removing nails! I hate the thought of having to re-hang it all but knowing we will have fresh newly painted walls makes it worthwhile!

An update to my wishlist and another chart added FOR TRADE.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Don't Wear White After Labor Day! LOL!

Happy Labor Day!

I worked on the Willow Tree Sampler for a few nights again. It seems to be moving along quicker now. Maybe I just needed a break from it so I could see the progress better!

I keep finding more and more designs I want to start! For those of you with more than 3 WIP, how DO you do it? Right now my stitching schedule includes working on The Willow Tree Sampler for 3 nights and then working on And A Forest Grew for 3 nights. The seventh night is used for whatever my heart desires. Usually TV! I finally got a link for my wishlist posted in the sidebar of my blog! YEA if for no other reason than making it easy for myself!

What a big week we have ahead of us! Wednesday is our 31st anniversary. Friday is Harold's birthday. Saturday is my 5 month anniversary of quitting smoking! Plus new chairs for the living area, we will pick up our new glasses, get the rug for the living area ordered and hopefully get a little painting done around the house!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

September Goals

I was busy yesterday and didn't get a chance to post my goals for Sept. Here we go!

1. Continue working on building up my stash -- YES
2. Post to some group blogs -- NO
3. Work on some finishing techniques -- Not as much as I would like
4. Complete at least 2 projects this month -- YES
5. Print out some freebies -- YES
6. Finish up Their Song -- YES

1. Continue working on And A Forest Grew
2. Complete Willow Tree Sampler
3. Get new chairs for house
4. Get new rug for living area
5. At least one new stitching start
6. Stitch no less than 2 smalls
7. Paint the kitchen

Saturday, September 01, 2007

A New Month

Today is the first day of September! Where did the summer months go? School has started back, the leaves are beginning to slowly change colors, the stores are stocked with autumn clothes and decor but the weather still says summer is hanging on! I am ready to pull out my sweaters and enjoy some cooler days but that's not gonna happen just yet!

Did you notice anything different about my blogging this week? I tried out a schedule with themes for each day.

Monday was Crafts and Hobbies
Tuesday was Home Decor and Tips
Wednesday was On the Road and Recipes
Thursday was Nature's Bounty
Friday was Crafts and Hobbies again (cause I love to talk about them)
Saturday and Sunday were left blank and available for whatever may pop up!

I haven't decided if I will continue this schedule or only use it occasionally. I have the weekend to make up my mind!

I plan to keep my September goals on the simple side. And will list them within the next several days.