Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Almost Gone

This is the same post I make at the end of each year with a few changes here and there to suit the time of my life. It may get old to some but it works for me.

A New Year is right around the corner! A brand new clean calendar! It's up to each one of us what we do with it. Each year I make the same goals with a possible extra or two tossed in for good measure. I prefer to use "goals" instead of "resolutions" because I feel that I am taking already important things in my life and putting my focus on strengthening them.

1. To make an effort to learn something new every day. The joy of knowledge is indeed a blessing no matter what you choose to learn.

2. To make time for myself. It's amazing what 15 minutes sitting on the deck with a hot cup of coffee and watching the birds can do for my soul. A little time each day to refresh my spirit is all it takes.

3. To take time to appreciate each day. Too often we forget to see the beauty around us and take the simple things in life for granted. My continued goal is to look with my eyes but to see with my heart. To simply enjoy life and all that is a part of it.

4. To enjoy my family and friends. I am lucky to have each and every one of them in my life. I have been blessed with so many online friends and each day I am grateful for each one of you! My online stitching and blogging friends are a very important part of my life!

5. Organize and Simplify! Two key words I always yearn to make a part of my everyday routine but often lose focus on. Organize doesn't mean I have to go on a cleaning rampage each day. It just means I need to get my life and things that are a part of my life in some of manageable order so that I feel comfortable instead of constantly overwhelmed. Not putting things off until the last minute can contribute greatly to this cause! Simplify! Just what it means - plain and simple! Stop making a mountain out of a mole hill, do what I can and leave the rest, don't volunteer for more than I feel I can handle or feel will stress me out!

6. To Remember. So many people have come and gone from my life over the recent years and I want to keep their memory alive.
7. To keep my faith alive and strong.

And of course the New Year just wouldn't be complete without a few just plain fun goals!

1. Take more trips. Even day trips can be fun.

2. No pressure. Keep the fun and joy in stitching. This is why I started in the first place! I actually have several special projects planned for this year but will keep them a secret until I start.

3. Take more pictures.

4. Continue to have blog give a ways

5. Get back into life! Period. Plain and simple.

6. Work on home improvements. We have plenty to choose from!

Have a safe New Year's Eve! Thanks for stopping by! Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Remember to leave a comment on December 28 post if you are interesting in entering the giveaway!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Day After

Once again, I want to say thank you to all my blogging, stitching and scrapping friends. This has been a rough year for me and to know that all of you have been there to support me has meant more than I can possibly put into words. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. You are definitely special people in my book!

The Hospice House where my Dad passed away is planning to start a memorial walkway. They have asked families of those who have passed away here to make a donation and in return a brick will be placed with the loved one's name in the walkway. I am thrilled to announce that my Dad will have a brick in this special memorial. It means a lot to me because my Dad loved this area. He lived here for over 50 years. Worked here, raised a family here and had a life. He is not buried here though and I have wanted to do something to say "yes, he was here and he placed his mark on this city". Now there will be.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. It was raining all day here so we all stayed indoors playing with our gifts and watching movies all day. I got up early Christmas morning to make sure that Harold's stocking got filled nice and full! He seemed to like everything he got whether it was wrapped or pulled from his stocking.

As for me, I got some of the gifts I had asked for then Santa surprised me with the Christmas at Hawk Run Hollow pattern! Oh my gosh! I know I said I wouldn't buy any more and I didn't! Santa got it for me! Maybe I need to get busy on these HRH designs I have sitting around because I know I will want Autumn when it is released!

Not much planned for today. I may venture out later today to pick up some floss. Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Have a Merry Christmas

My turkey is in the fridge thawing out. I usually get a great big tray of BBQ from my favorite place to last from Christmas Eve all through Christmas Day. For several days, everyone can make a BBQ sandwich or have a nice BBQ plate with fixings. It gives me a time out from all the holiday cooking too but to my surprise this year when I went to place my order, the one really good BBQ place (in my opinion) around here that I enjoy had closed down! AGH! No BBQ this Christmas because I just don't like the other places that much. I'll cook.

Here is a progress picture of my stitching. I only have several flowers left on this section before I can move on to the last section of the design and then I will finished! Also, I got a wonderful tin of goodies from Edgar! How sweet of him to do this and they were delicious! I say "were" because what the boys didn't finish off, I did! I called dibs on the wonderful white chocolate bark with nuts and dried cranberries! Yum!

This will probably be my last post of the week. Tomorrow I will be getting an early start on some things for Christmas Eve dinner. Christmas Eve, I will be cooking and Christmas Day I plan to rest up and let everyone eat left overs.

Have a Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday. Until next time may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart. I am already working on several more challenge scrapbooking layouts for the holidays. I am so glad I got back into this! I love the inspiration! Be on the look out soon for another giveaway, too!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Week Begins

The ice was gone early in the weekend. The temps didn't warm up much but the sun did it's job getting rid of it. Yea. I love snow but ice is totally different story. No thanks, I'll pass on that.

I read a wonderful article from about grieving during the holidays and how to keep Christmas alive during this sad time for so many. I even shared it with DH since he has lost both parents within the past 5 years and now both my parents are gone as well. The article first stated that often you have re-route Christmas traditions after the loss of a loved one and many people even feel this type of lose when moving away from family or experiencing the empty nest syndrome. The article suggested that you and your spouse (or a good friend) start a new holiday tradition. A day trip, a day with a movie and dinner. It could be something silly or something traditional but let it become a tradition and it will be meaningful. You could also start a new tradition all by your little ol' lonesome such as taking a class of some kind, a quite lunch out, a new project. The traditions you had with your missing loved ones can never be replaced but starting a new one can often help ease the hurt you feel from their loss. Harold and I discussed it and we both like the idea. We are going to start with one new tradition this year and add several more to the list next year.

For more than several years I have been thinking that I would really like to get new Christmas stockings for me and Harold. I have always looked while out shopping during the season but never found what I wanted until this year! I just love them! They are smaller than our old ones but look how fun they are compared to our old plain and boring ones! These are up and ready for Santa to fill.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Back and Cold!

I am back. I have been in a bad funk since the summer months with all that has been happening. I really haven't even been in much of Christmasy mood so far. This past week was pretty quite. I spent time reflecting on a lot of things and people. I took time to visit the blogs I enjoy reading so much. I had a quite birthday several days ago. It hurt to know I wouldn't be getting my Dad's usual call with a big boisterous version of Happy Birthday on the other end but I was happy to hear from several other loved ones. Harold surprised me by coming home early, we went out to eat some good comfort food then came back home and I climbed into my new snuggly jammies for the rest of the evening.

I worked on my stitching some over this past week and it is slowly moving along. I have promised myself that I will not be getting any new designs for awhile. I have 3 boxes of kitted up charts just waiting for their turn at the needle. I am still enjoying getting back into my scrapbooking / journaling / photography. It is good to get these thoughts and feelings down.

No snow in our weather yet but we have been having some mighty cold days and nights. I don't think my poor ol' nose has unthawed completely in a full week! The forecast is calling was calling for a winter mix in our area yesterday. We saw some snow and sleet while we were running some errands yesterday but this morning we woke up to see this. We had alot of ice last night while we slept. Ugh!

Everyone has blogging dry spells and I hope to be better about blogging now. Until next time, may you have simple days and uncluttered heart.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Anything Christmas

Yes, I am still working on my stitching. Just taking it slow. For my hand's sake and because of other things keeping me busy right now. I do manage to put a couple stitches in a day though. Life is finally showing some signs of turning around and letting us get back our normal routines.

I admit it. I want it all. I want time to do it all. I want all the walls in my home to be over flowing with stitched pieces. I want our beds and closets to be full of loving quilts I have made. I want to scrapbook and journal our lives, our memories and what everyday means to me. I want a garden that makes you want to pitch a tent and live outdoors among it all. I want a magazine Christmas. You know the perfect tree with everyone all cozied up and happy. Not to mention that the house just looks perfect while doing it all on a budget! LOL. Now I will take a moment for a *big sigh* while reality moves back into place. It's frustrating but it keeps me moving.

This mini album is for a challenge over at Practical Scrappers. It will be a good place to keep photo and memories of Christmas needle arts I make or gifts.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Challenge Layout - Workout #9

I have enjoyed scrapping all these challenge layouts this month. There are even more I hope to get done. This one was done for Workout #9 over at ScrapFit. The layout was to use 1 picture, 1 word, some glitter and have plenty of white space. I journaled on the back that this was a picture of my moma taken during her last Christmas season before she passed away. She is playing with my dog (which was also a Christmas present one year).

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Challenge is Good

I did this layout for the current challenge over at the All About Me blog. As soon as I read the challenge, I knew it was for me. After all that has happened this year and this being the first Christmas since my Dad passed away there will be alot of emotions running helter skelter. I hope that journaling them will help. You can click on the photo to see it better.

Thanks AAM!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Mid Week

This is layout is from a challenge over at The Good Grief Blog. I really enjoyed doing this one. I don't know if you can read the journaling or not but this one is very special to me.

Our weather has gone back and forth lately from very chilly to nice no sweater needed days and from sunny to yucky won't stop raining for a moment days! That's how it usually is around here from December all the way through the mid part of February!

Have a wonderful day! Until next time may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

December is Here!

I have been gone from my blog way too long! I have been around but life has sort been upside down for the present. It happens. Not often, thank goodness but when it does happen I wait for it to flip back around and give my life a bit of normalcy. Right now, I am waiting.

Wow! It's December already! I missed my November goal of finishing up MHIBIG but I did work on it some. I can always give myself till the end of December to finish it up. It has been awhile since I posted any progress pictures so I will do that today! I did get some greenery done and a few flowers started since last time.

During December I want to work on some layouts from the challenge blogs at the right. During the month there are all types of classes for mini books for documenting up until Christmas or even the entire month. I have chosen to do the entire month of December. I did this once before and really enjoyed it. Who knows, maybe next year I will start at Thanksgiving and go all the way through.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I haven't pulled out any of our Christmas yet which is very unlike me. I usually get it all out and start putting things up on Thanksgiving weekend. Maybe soon.

Thanks so much for stopping by to visit and thank you to all my readers who stick by me during these off moments when I don't blog quite as regularly as I would like.

Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Gobble Gobble

Everything has been busier than usual around here lately. Or so it has seemed. I haven't had time to play around with any of my stitching or scrapbooking until today when I did pick up MHIBIG once again. I am hoping that everything begins to settle back into place by the end of the month. I do miss reading all the blogs I enjoy so much!

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and I have been stocking up for the big day. I even bought TWO turkeys last week. One for Thanksgiving and another for Christmas. Who could blame me at 40 cents a pound! For now our Thanksgiving menu is pretty traditional.

1. Turkey
2. Dressing
3. Green Bean Cassarole
4. Mashed potatoes and gravy
5. Deviled Eggs
6. Cranberry sauce
7. Pumpkin Pie

What are you doing for Thanksgiving? Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Special People

November is National Hospice & Palliative Care Month.

This year’s theme, “Preserving a Legacy… Treasuring Memories,” reminds us that hospice and palliative care brings comfort, dignity and peace to help people live every moment of life to the fullest, leaving loved ones with memories they can treasure. It takes a special person to work in Hospice. The people that were there for my Dad and our family were so thoughtful and wonderful.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Almost the Weekend!

I worked on sorting out pictures the past several days. I have so many albums already done but I still have boxes and boxes just waiting for some attention. Not all of these will be scrapped so my job was to sort out which ones would and which ones wouldn't. I now have 1 box of photos not to be scrapped and 3 large boxes of photos to scrap! I also have a big pile waiting on several CDs waiting to be printed out so they can go into the scrapbooking pile. *sigh*

I had to pick up several colors I had run out of so that I can finish up My Home is Built in Glory. I am hoping to have it totally finished by November 21st which was my Dad's birthday. That is my goal. I have taken a break from stitching so far this past week and my hands feel great! I guess this means I will be cutting back on my stitching (but not stopping) during the colder months because I really don't want to take any of those strong arthritis meds.

I also worked on several more layouts. This is one I did from the pictures I inherited from my Dad. It is a picture of him at 6 months of age with his nanny, Rose.

Remember to sign up for the giveaway by leaving a comment on the Oct. 25th post. Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart! Happy Halloween to all.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

My Favorite

What I love about Fall ---

1. The beautiful colors of the leaves changing
2. The cooler days
3. Time to pull the sweaters and flannel jammies out
4. Time to start feeding the birds again after the summer break
5. Memories of childhood when I see piles of leaves
6. Holidays with lots of good food
7. This year, remembering my Dad on his birthday and at Christmas. Two days he loved to celebrate up big!

Remember to sign up for the giveway by leaving a comment on the Oct. 25th post. Thanks for stopping by. Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Taking a Day

Harold told me I needed a day off. No housework, no doctors, no worries. Yesterday we decided to take a day and go up around the mountain area, see the leaves changing and just soak in the simple beauty. After several days of rain and blah weather, it turned out to be a nice day and it was just what I needed after everything that has been going on in my life lately. I actually laughed for an absolutely silly reason! The first time I have laughed since my father passed away. You can click on the pictures to see them larger.

My favorite shops were the dulcimer shop and Mast General Store. I don't play the dulcimer but always loved the music from it. I picked up a cornstalk doll and another Gee Haw Whimmy Diddle and Harold got some canned pickled Green Tomatoes he had been hunting for.

I am hoping there will be more day trips in store for us (probably later in the Spring) but for now my soul has been satisfied and refreshed with the glory of God's work and the fun crafts and wonderful foods of the local residents!

The days have been warm enough but rainy and overcast. The nights, on the other hand, have been downright chilly. I love my cozy warm pajamas so while we were out one day I picked up a new pair of luscious snuggly fleece jammies to lounge around in while I stitch on these chilly evenings! And speaking of stitching, I was able to work on My Home is Built is Glory some more. It is coming right along. Enough so, that I am ready to get everything ready to start on With My Needle. I am thinking I will work on MHIBIG on Monday thru Thursday then pick up WMN to work on Friday thru Sunday. Good deal.

Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart! Thank you so much for stopping in again!

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Since I will be busy most of the week I thought I would go ahead and put up my giveaway post today.

After digging through my stash I found a design that would make a perfect giveaway! If you are interested in having your name included in the drawing, please leave a comment on this post along with your email address so that I can contact you if you happen to be the winner! The deadline to have your name included in the drawing will be early Saturday morning (Sept. 19) at 12 am EST. The lucky design chosen from my stash to be given away is ---------- Are you ready? ----------- Salina Dunwoody by Sheepish Designs!

I was able to get some stitching time in so far this weekend and pulled out My Home is Built in Glory to work on some more. I was also able to start on one of the Stacy Nash Halloween designs I had mentioned. I will post pictures sometime later this week.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Goals and Such

I can't believe it's September already! Harold and I have already celebrated an anniversary and his birthday this month! I have always felt that once the September calendar goes up, it seems like a flash and then the holidays are here!

This past week while DH was home with me, life had finally seemed to slow down a bit and I had time to think a bit more clearly. I thought about some of my goals. Not necessarily short term goals - just goals in general for the remainder of 2009 and probably on in the next year. Since I am a major list maker for any and everything, I pulled out my notepad and pen to start jotting them down. Here are a few of the things I have listed so far.

1. On the gardening front, I want to join the two existing islands to make one big island. This will not be done until after my surgery and I get the thumbs up from my doctor to do some heavy labor. (I will do this with some weed fabric and lots of bark chips) plus re- mulch some areas in the existing islands. I brought home some cuttings of plants from my Dad's yard and I am thrilled to announce that after unsure anticipation, several have new growth and will hopefully make it through the upcoming winter months! There are still several others that haven;t shown any signs of life yet but I still have hope for them. Dad's memorial stepping stone arrived yesterday and it looks beautiful in it's new setting. I, also, wanted to share a photo of my new birdbath for the garden that came from my Dad's yard. The smaller birds just love it!

2. Get busy with my stitching! I know I will find a good many new charts coming out from the show this month that I will want but I need to make myself get more serious about what I have on hand before going too ga-ga but it's just so very very hard! I have several WIPs that I really want to finish up but those new starts keep calling my name! I am hoping to have some stitching progress to show off very soon!

3. Frame up some of my finished pieces and start hanging my work! This is a must!

4. I really need to get my pictures in some kind of order! I would like to use some of my scrapbooking mini albums and do some theme albums such as one or two for Dad, one for our trips and so on.

5. Do at least one repair, make-over, clean out (such as a closet or dresser) or fix-up to the house per month. Some of the items on the house list are small and won't take long or much money. They just need to be started. After being in a house 20 years, a lot of things tend to fall apart all at once! So goes life as a homeowner.

6. Make a trip by the fabric store and pick up some more calicos, pull out several appropriate quilt patterns and get busy!

Like I said before, these are just a few of the things I listed! I certainly don't want to overwhelm myself. After all, there are 7 days in a week, 4 weeks in a month, 365 day or 52 weeks in a year. I have time.

What makes a house feel homey to you? For me it's quilts, cross stitch or needlework samplers, folkart collections, wooden bowls, stoneware mixing bowls, crocheted doilies, soft lamps lighting a room and anything old or distressed. I guess Harold and I fit in perfectly! LOL.

That's about all for today! Thank you stopping by to see me again! Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Monday, September 07, 2009

I'm Back

I really needed this past week. It was so nice to have Harold at home with me. We got a lot done. Oops - I mean he got a lot done and I watched since I am still pretty much on "light and easy" duty until my surgery.

While shopping one day, we ran across a new shipment of River Birch trees! Why was I so excited? Because this tree was the first item to be listed for my in progress Memory Garden! Naturally, I looked at DH with sad eyes and told him I could do without it if he thought it was too big to fit into the car. He rolled his eyes and said he would find a way to get it in the car somehow. And he did! It will definitely have a special home in my garden!

All the rails and columns on our front porch were in desperate need of being replaced. Usually we do that kind of work ourselves to save a few bucks but with all that has happened lately we decided to contract the work out and we are so thrilled with the results! We will paint it ourselves in a few weeks but we now have a porch that will probably out live us!

Harold stayed busy by repainting the hall bath. He made a major job of it all by replacing some of the hardware and fixtures but the bathroom certainly does look wonderful now! I bought a space saver for the hall bathroom about 15 years ago and we finally opened the sealed box and put it together then set it up in the bathroom! Even though I wasn't able to do a lot of physical stuff, I was able to tag along and pick out colors for paint, new bath rugs, shower curtains and such. Whew! Hard work!
There are still quite a few left chores left on our "to do to the house" list but we are getting a start! I would so so very happy if we could have all the inside stuff finished by the end of the year but that may be a little too hopeful.

I was able to spend some more time with my stitching. Not much but every little bit is another step closer to finishing! I also spent some time walking around the yard with my camera looking for some surprises. I haven't done this in quite awhile so it was an enjoyable experience with a familiar comfort attached to each step. I was thrilled to see that Autumn is just around the corner. The leaves are beginning to slowly turn and the mornings (as you can in the picture) have a definite briskness which makes me want to sit out back with my coffee and enjoy all that nature has to offer me.

We took several days to go up to see my step mother. She is like me and doing a little better each day. Since I will be unable to come back for awhile because of surgery and some other obligations, we went through a few of my Dad's things for me to bring on back home. They are mostly things I can remember being in our home since I was very little and I always admired them (even as a little girl) so it feels a little funny to have them in my home now. I'm sure that I will be going back after the surgery to help out some more.

We had a nice anniversary and went out to eat that evening. It was a very nice week and a large portion of the tension and anxiety that was such huge part of my life for quite a while finally washed away and I feel more at peace with the loss of my Dad. I know I will always miss him and there will still be hard days but for the most part, I do feel much better.

Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart. Thank you for stopping by to visit with me and for all the support I have received during this time!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Moving On

During the weekend and after taking time out for a gallbladder attack or two, I was able to accomplish a bit. After some weeding and planting a few new things for the garden that I had promised my Dad I would create for the two of us, I found a wonderful stepping stone to add my own personalization to. This is the picture in the catalog but mine will read "In Loving Memory of" along with my Dad's name. I know it will find a happy home in "Our Garden". A lot of what is left to be done will not be accomplished until this Fall and next Spring after my surgery and I get the OK to start doing heavy work again.

I was able to finally pick up my cross stitch again. Not for long periods but it felt good to do a few stitches. I worked on My Home is Built in Glory and would like to have it finished sometime in September if all the busy-ness allows. I will post a picture when I get a little more done.

As for me, I have good days when the tears stay at bay and other days when I still cry from the time I get up until the time I go to bed. I promised my Dad I would be strong and I am trying. I really am.

My dear husband is taking a week off to spend with me. We have no special plans except for doing little things around the house and just being lazy. We do have our 33rd anniversary coming up this weekend.

Monday, August 24, 2009


I went to see the surgeon one last time today before surgery tomorrow and he was not happy some of my lab work so surgery has been post poned for the time. I am hoping that my blood levels are off because of all the stress I have been dealing with lately and they will return to normal within several weeks which is when I will have another session of lab work. Surgery has been put off until mid-September for the time being unless something else should (but hopefully not) happen.

Thank you all for hanging in there with me.

Monday Monday

How orginal is that post title? There isn't much news to tell about at this time. I am supposed to be on rest in preparation for the surgery on Tuesday but my nerves are still so totally wound up and I have been yanking weeds up from my islands like crazy. The weeds really went wild during the three months I was so busy traveling back and forth to see my dad during his illness. I am paying for my stubbornness now because the bursitis has kicked up in my upper right arm from all the pulling and tugging I was doing.

This may be the last post for awhile since my surgery is tomorrow and I don't know what to expect afterwards. I know that my posts will be scarce and fewer than usual for awhile anyway until life begins to slowly get back to normal for me but I want everyone to know that I do appreciate you all sticking with me during this time! Your friendships have really helped me and meant more to me than you will ever know! Don't give up on me. You never know when I may pop back up!

May you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Thank You

Thank you all so much for your kind words during this time. It is still hard for me to comprehend that my Dad is really gone. I was able to see him and spend time with him on the day of his death. I promised him I would try to be strong. I also promised him that I would work on a garden just for us with a few of his favorite plants and a few of my favorites. I think he would like that and it will be our special place.

At the present time, I am getting ready for surgery. I will have my gallbladder removed on August 25th and then do whatever "recoop" time the doctor feels is necessary. After all of that, I will probably be going back to my Dad's house to help my stepmother sort through his belongings.

I haven't done any cross stitch in quite awhile and haven't even felt like picking it back up yet. But I have several patterns and even some quilts in mind that I would like to work on after I cross this first bridge.

Thank you all for being there for me during this extremely difficult time. You are all wonderful and my life is so much more complete because of your friendship. Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


I have been out of town this past week so that I could be close to my father during his illness and his stay in the Hospice House. It was a shocking blow to see how far he had gone downhill since my last visit which had only been a week or so before that. He was definitely in pain and unable to talk and appeared unresponsive but I know he knew I was there because he gave me several signs which gave me comfort.

My father was a great man. In size as well as character. He passed away on August 13th, the day after the 40th anniversary of my mother's death. We are all still in a state of shock because this cancer and his death seemed to happen then progress so quickly. I know he is no longer in pain but my heart will always ache.

I Love You, Dad.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Taking a Good Hard Look

As I sit here updating my blog, I am waiting on a phone call from my doctor. It is my gallbladder and I will need surgery. They will have to refer me to a surgeon and so on. I need to let my doctor know that we need to speed this up some! I got word about my dad and it looks like I will need to get back there as quickly as possible!

I told Harold that we need to move some of our birdhouses to the side of our storage building. There are some stray cats that I have been having to "shoo" away from the occupied houses because they are stalking the present tenants! I love hearing all my babies chirping so early in the morning!

There is definitely not much news this morning but the day is still young! LOL. If you get a chance, Vonna's blog is a must read today! She always has a way of helping me put things in perspective about myself and my life! Now, that's a friend!

Thank you all for visiting. I know my posts have been sort of on the down side lately. I am hoping things will begin to look better very soon and I am grateful to you all for continueing to stop by during this terrible slump! Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Monday, August 03, 2009

Monday News Flash!

It was a long weekend with more tests and several more "attacks" but it also brought a beautiful rainbow after one of the many storms we had. Everyone (including the doctors) are giving me reason to believe it may be my gallbladder causing the problem but no one is saying anything definite until the test results are in. For right now I am waiting to hear if I will be sent to the hospital sometime this week. I have total faith in my doctors and God above so I am not worried about anything. I just want a solution to this problem because the "attacks" are coming much more frequently now and I really can't travel to see my dad until something is done to fix it!

I am in the midst of getting my next order together and hope to send off for it very soon! I also picked up my current WIP a few times over the weekend and got a little bit done on it but naturally not as much as I would have liked!

Over the weekend, I found a wonderful 50% off sale and these boxes (plus the sale prices) were impossible to pass up! They are in my kitchen and I will use the smaller boxes to hold coupons. I lined the rooster box with some shelf paper and am using it as a bread box. I also have another garden theme small box which I may use for some stitching storage.

Until next time, here's wishing you simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Back Home!

Thank you to all who have left comforting comments about my Dad. Yes, it is hard. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think anything like this would happen to him. I always think of him as a strong, confident, independent person and to suddenly, without any real warning, see him in his present condition is very upsetting. I received a sudden call last weekend that the doctor had said it would be a good idea for the family to come so I have been out of town this past week. Once again, his condition was very touch and go. When I left on Friday, he was beginning to show some improvement but there is still a long road ahead of us all.

And thank you for also leaving comments wishing me well also. This is definitely not a good time for me to be ill. I was able to get in to see my doctor before I left town and he seems to feel that one of my new medications was causing the problem. He has taken me off of it and so far so good! Fingers crossed!

I did not work on my stitching much this past week but I hope to find some time for it this week! I took this picture of my current progress since I haven't posted any of my work in awhile (or so it seems to me). After getting back home from a long and emotional week, I told Harold that I may not be waiting too much longer to get some new stash! I am also thinking of a new start! I know I should finish up the present one first but.........!

Thank you all for stopping by to see me! Your friendship means so much to me especially during these emotional times! Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Good News

No pictures today as you will find out the reason why as you read on.

Thank you to everyone who kept my Dad in your prayers. I talked to my stepmother yesterday and his primary care doctor didn't even know about any of this and once he found out, he really got the ball rolling and made sure these other doctors got busy on Dad's case. Both my stepmother and I feel relieved because for so long it was as though the doctors were just sweeping his case under the rug. Now they are taking action! There is still the posibility we may lose him to the cancer but we take one step at a time for now.

The reason there is no picture is that I was not home most of day yesterday so no stitching got done. I spent almost all day in the Emergency Room at the hospital. Harold was convinced I was having a heart attack and I kept telling him no, it wasn't but the pain was still really severe. They did alot of tests and found some things they want me to discuss with my primary care physician next week. Today I just feel really weak and will probably spend the day resting. Thank goodness they did enough testing because they were talking about sending me into surgery!

So for today, dear friends, I will keep this short so I can get back to resting in bed.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Christmas in July

Check out this fun giveaway!

More Fun!

Patti is having a wonderful giveaway so be sure to drop by to check it out!

I hope everyone has a wonderful and fun weekend!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Listen Up!

Go to Violarium's site and sign up for this wonderful giveaway book of cross stitch alphabets! After all, what stitcher doesn't need more charts or books!

It looks like it will be an overcast day of clouds and maybe even a few rain showers. That sounds good to me. The clouds will keep the hot hot hot sun at bay and we could definitely use some rain around here! Plus it's another good reason to stay inside and stitch after I get the basic housework done!

Have a wonderful day and until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

A Giveaway and Happy Places

There really isn't a lot of exciting and fun news to report on right now. I am already sick of this hot weather (although our July 4th weekend turned out nice and comfortable). Usually when July comes around, I am so ready for Fall and try to satisfy my desire for this season by surrounding myself with any and everything Fall. Of course I can't pull out the sweaters just yet but notice that I changed my blog template! Actually, I enjoy all the Seasons. I can just tolerate some longer than others. Summer is definitely on my "short" list with all the heat and humidity!

How do I start off my mornings? Why with a cup of coffee, of course and reading my stitching blogs while enjoying them. There are also a couple of other blogs I especially enjoy. Daisy Cottage and Birdnest Cottage. Wander on over and visit them!

I am going to have a different type of giveaway this time. It's not anything stitching or craft related. In the past I have mentioned how I enjoy collecting miniature books. I realized that I recently bought one that I already have. I could take it back to the store for a refund or just exchange it but what fun would that be! I have alot more now than what the picture shows and I think I will leave the book as a surprise!

Leave a comment on this post only by Friday, July 10 at 9pm EST stating that you would like your name to be entered in the drawing for this. Make sure you leave a link to your blog or an email address so that I contact you if you are the winner! The winner will be annnounced on Monday.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Good Morning!

For several months running, I have forgotten to post my goals (past and present). Oh well, for now I need to give myself a break! I will start listing and posting them again in the early Fall.

I hope everyone had a long and enjoyable Holiday weekend! We did some our usual errands and routines but nothing special (unless grocery shopping counts. Nawwww!). We cooked out, watched some movies and enjoyed some neighborhood fireworks from the front porch.

I took some time off from stitching to help Harold with repairs on the front porch rails. We ran into a few minor problems that were fixed easily enough until--------- we realized that the majority of the wood was just rotten and it all needs to be replaced! *big hard heavy sigh* The joys of being a homeowner!

In the meantime, I was able to get some more done on my recent work in progress. After all my bragging about not having any problems with my hands, I overworked them with more yardwork and stitching than usual and both hands had a bad flare up so I had to slow it down a bit over the weekend.
Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Gardens and Needles

I have psoriasis. Not a fun topic but I have it non the less and a pretty bad case of it. I have had it since I was a young child and found no comfort back then when the doctors told me that my children probably wouldn't get it! Of course I am glad now, though. Any hoo, years ago I was in an experimental program for a new medication being used to control this beast. I cleared up -- completely! I wore tank tops, swim suits, dresses, shorts and more with no worry! I chose to leave the program after a year because it was experimental and some of the side effects were pretty spooky to me. Also I was not allowed to get pregnant while taking it and we wanted children. So naturally the psoriasis broke back out.

Many moons later, I go to see my rheumatologist for my aching bones and she diagnoses me as having psoriatic arthritis and puts me back on this same medication! Only now it is no longer experimental and they feel since I handled it well last time I will do wonderfully this time also. I will be clear again! I am having a blast look through catalogs at shorts and dresses and short sleeve blouses!

Oh and it is obviously helping my arthritis too! Since I began taking this medication, I have had not one problem with my hands, fingers and wrists that were always swelling and very tender to touch. I can stitch, garden and even open a jar of mayonaisse with no problems again! Yea! Two benefits!

Speaking of gardening, our tomatoes are out and a couple have some! This year, I decided to mix it up a bit and bought several Heirloom tomato plants also! And speaking of cross stitch, I have been working on my WIP alot more lately so I hope to have some real progress to post next time!

Thank you all for your get well wishes. Both DH and myself are feeling much better and hope to be able totally over this by the time our meds run out and then we schedule a trip to go see my Dad again!

Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart! Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

More Hot Days

As I mentioned in my last post, Harold got home from his camping/astronomy trip. What I didn't mention is that he came home coughing and sick. I jokingly told him that he had better not get me sick but the next morning I woke up coughing. He decided to go in to the see the doctor and I tagged along to see if they could fit me in. They did. Turns out Harold had a full blown case of bronchitis and I was in the beginning stages of it. I told my doctor to nip in the bud now! Luckily I caught mine before I started to feel really lousy! I was going to make a trip up to see my Dad but that is on hold until I am 100% over this.

I also forgot to mention that over the weekend I got a package from Edgar with several charts. One was the La D Da chart I won from his giveaway and the other was a chart from our trade. He also sent along some tea with the scent and flavor of cookies!! YUM! He is such a sweetheart!

Here is a progress to date photo of My Home is Built in Glory. As I said, I am not pushing myself on this one. I remember working on Handanger fabric years ago and hated it but I am actually enjoying it this time and will probably be doing a lot more designs on it in the future!

Monday, June 29, 2009

This Little Piggy

I apologize for my lack of posting lasting again last week but it was definitely a full week! I tried to catch up on housework from when I was gone a mere 2 days, I discovered that I had to adjust to this new medication I am on so there times I didn't feel so great, I didn't feel sick but I sure enough ran a fever for several days and I spoke with my Dad several times just because.

Harold went on his yearly astronomy outing last week. I hate it when he is gone at night and if he had been gone because of work, I would have had no problem fussing about his absence whether it did any good or not but I just feel too strongly about the importance of hobbies so I encouraged to him to go and enjoy his trip. I did envy him because the group went to West Virginia this year and to the exact same location that Harold and I vacationed in last summer! What beautiful and peaceful part of the country! If it hadn't been a camp out, stay up all night to watch the stars then sleep all day kind of trip I might have tagged along. After years of Cub Scouts with the boys, I swore I would never sleep on the ground again and I am definitely not a night owl! I did use the time to work on my stitching a little bit and used this as a sort of mini vacation for myself as well. Pot pies, pizza, sandwiches and other simple meals for dinner! I did the essentials so life as we know it didn't fall apart but then I did more of my own thing than usual. Stitching, gardening, watching and enjoying the birds plus watching some really good movies!

Even though I did get some stitching done, I decided to take my time on this piece so I don't have much new to show. Maybe I will have a burst of energy this week and get alot done on it! Instead I will share a picture of my piggy family. I got them on a trip to the mountains also. We stopped at a gift shop and when I exclaimed over them, the owner told me that her 5 year old grandson wanted to make some money and made these from clay. I asked him how much he wanted and he said $4! LOL! I gave him $10.

Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Hot Southern Days

Since being back home again I have been busy getting the house back in some kind of recognizable order! It's amazing how 3 people can do so much damage in so little time! LOL.

I still haven't picked up my stitching since being back but I was going to take a picture of what I have done so far but the camera battery needed to be recharged. Got that done and now I can post a picture of my progress to date. I think I will pick it back up this evening and work on it some more.

There isn't much news right now. The heat is unbearable and I am happy to spend the better part of the day indoors with AC but in the early morning (before it gets hot) or in the evenings (when the sun is low in the sky) I will venture outside to enjoy a bit of gardening. I did speak with my father after returning home but things are pretty much the same. I want to thank everyone for their concern and prayers. It means so much to me.

Until next time may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Monday Review

I didn't get any stitching done over the weekend as I had planned because I got a last minute phone call from my step sister asking if I wanted to ride up and see our folks for Father's Day. I have been wanting to see my Dad since he got home from the hospital so I packed a bag and off we went! Unfortunately when I got there I found out that my Dad's health was not as good as I had thought and the news was not good. The next few months will be rocky for all of us to say the least.

I was so tired when I got home yesterday I just rested then went to bed early but I have some extra stitching time coming up later this week so I plan to take advantage of it but for today I will show off another pig from my tiny collection.

Over the past several weeks, we have ordered and watched a few movies on Pay Per View. Gran Torino with Clint Eastwood was the first. I have never been a big Clint fan especially of his westerns but this movie was great! We all enjoyed it and I highly recommend it! The next movie we ordered was The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. I had been wanting to see this. You were able to see WWII through a child's eyes which gave a whole new meaning to war. For those of you who haven't seen it, I don't want to spoil the ending but it was not anything like I was expecting! Definitely another good movie and a must see! I watched this movie several times before our viewing period expired.

Until next time, dear friends, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart. Thank you for stopping by to visit with me and I hope you come back soon!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Sound the Trumpets!

Introducing my new start! My Home is Built in Glory by Beth Twist! After thinking it over, going through my fabric stash and thinking it over some more I finally decided to use a piece of Ivory Hardanger for this design and I am sticking with the colors listed. The more I looked at this design, the more I loved it! I am a big fan of Beth's work and I always look forward to any new releases by her! FYI - there is another design by her in the group picture from Wednesday! I will show my progress after the weekend when I have had time to get enough done to be photo worthy!

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and until next time we meet, may you have simple days and uncluttered heart!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Oink! Oink!

I thought I would share a picture of one of my pigs today. It is one of my many collections. On the base rests a campaign button from the Eisenhower presidency that I found at a yard sale a few years back and scored for a whopping quarter! Hey, hey big spender!

Blogging and hobbies often suffer during the summer months with school being out, family vacations, yard work and all this on top of life's every day chores.
I did manage to pull one of the charts from my stash to start on. I will wait until I have a little more done to post a picture and leave it as a surprise until then as to which one I am working on but it was in yesterday's picture! It seems as though there has been alot of startitis among stitchers lately and I just may take Kathy's advice and work on one several day then start another and so on until they all have my attention and I will probably be pulling my hair out! lol.

So until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart! Come back and see me soon!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

And the Week Goes On.

As I have read other stitching blogs, I have envisioned my own theme walls! Samplers, A&E, birds and even a wall about stitching! In my last post, I mentioned that I had pulled my next new start. Oops! I did, indeed, pull the next "intended" start but then so many others began to get my attention and they all seemed to be crying "me! me! pick me!" so for right now, I am stuck in indecision. I may be using eenie, meenie, minie, moe for this pick! Oh, and these are only a few of the ones screaming for my attention! Will the last part of June be full of multiple starts?

Simple! And the older I get, the more I want this style to be a part
of everything around me. Not just in my hobbies but in my day
to day life as well. From time to time I feel the need to do some major
de-cluttering. A cleaning out of the soul. Getting rid of those things I carry around within my heart on a daily basis until the weight of it all is more than I can handle. Time to toss out some things! Being able to rid myself of hard or hurt feelings & knowing that I was strong enough to let it go & move on is a great feeling! I’ve lived the drama & turmoil side of life. Now I crave the less cluttered road. No baggage needed!

Maren at Stitchery Doo asked me what kind of bush I had pictured from the "mud pit". It is a Burgandy Barberry. I had wanted several more Rosey Glow Barberry bushes but couldn't find them available anywhere. Maybe they will be out later in the season!

Until next time, I wish you simple days and an uncluttered heart! Come back and see me soon!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Being Productive!

I didn't get a lot of stitching done yesterday but I pulled out my basket of finished (but unframed) pieces and decided to start working on them again! I got Glad Tidings by BBD framed. I took several pictures and unfortunately, the only one that wasn't fuzzy had a glare! I hope to get at least one more framed over the weekend!

I hope everyone has a great weekend! Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Is it Wednesday Already?

Those long holiday weekends really mess up my mental calendar! Ok, I know I mentioned that I had some designs in my stash calling my name but I also have a couple of unfinished pieces that are begging for some attention! I really need to work on them a bit also!

I have added a few new blogs to my sidebar list! There are so many I already enjoy and I am always finding new ones that keep me captivated so in looking on down the road, I may end up having to start a blog for my list of blogs! LOL.

I recently went to a pottery store to pass some time. I saw all kinds of wonderful things that I normally would have loved to bring home but I had so many other things on my mind that I just passed by most of it without blinking an eye. I did see a cute little sheep stack that tugged at my heart enough to put in the shopping cart. Then I saw a wonderful cement duck for my garden area. It had a burnished look to it and looked very rustic. When I got to the checkout, I noticed some black smudges on my shirt. I set the duck down and my hands were solid black! That duck had been burnished with charcoal and it was rubbing off all over me! Yuck! What a mess! I paid for the cute sheep stack and told the checkout gal that she could just keep that duck 'cause I sure wasn't bringing it home with me now!

On a good news note, my Dad came home from the hospital yesterday! Two days ahead of what the doctors had said would happen while I was visiting! Yea Dad! Once he began improving, he really took off but I will never forget that horrible scare he gave us all!

Until next time - stay safe, stay happy and stay well!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Getting Back on Track

I hope everyone had a safe and fun holiday weekend! Thank you to everyone who sent their best wishes to me and for my father! It certainly means a lot to know my friends are thinking of us!

Each day I talk with my Dad and I am just thrilled at his progress! The dr. decided he was ready for something other than broth and is letting him begin some soft solid foods! I had to poke some fun with him though and tell him that he never let me have ice cream for breakfast! LOL. I just love hearing him sound better and more like himself each day. Of course, I am getting very antsy to get back up there and see him again! All in good time, I know!

I did manage to pull out Bird in the Bower to work on a bit in the evenings. There are several designs in my stash that are calling my name and I may be giving in to temptation sooner than I would like. I also decided I needed a little bit of pampering so I treated myself to some new floss for now.

I have been rather proud of how I have managed to cut back on my stash purchases lately. I consider floss and fabrics necessities so are never really a part of my stash diets. Of course I made a few purchases last month but I didn't go crazy like I usually do and I have very good since then. I can't make any promises about how much longer this dry spell will last though because I am constantly drooling over all these new designs that keep coming out!

Hopefully I can begin to get my life back into some recognizable order now and do more of things I need and especially enjoy! I hope everyone has a great day! Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A Very Long Week!

It was another short week of blogging and stitching. I had to make an emergency trip to see my father who is in the hospital. It was a very emotional week that left me pretty well drained once again but I am happy to be able to report that when I left to come back home, he was beginning to show signs of a slow but steady improvement. He is finally feeling up to phone calls so I have been keeping tabs while I am not there by calling him daily but I hope to get back up there sometime this week!

A few years ago, they joined the Arbor Day Foundation and got 10 very very small free trees (like twigs). Several died almost immediately but a few survived. One in particular was a Washington Hawthorn which had been potted and set on the patio. It is now a very good size compared to the original twig but no longer wanted so I have been chosen as the new owner since I love Hawthorns. I have the perfect place for it since we have a big bare space from the recent tree removal. I will be bringing it home on one of my upcoming visits.

I have no new stitching progress or starts to report right now. I hope to do even just a little bit before I make my next trip to see my Dad! After I got back home, I had tons of laundry to catch up on and I decided to use some of this nervous energy from the week's emotional ride to really clean around the house then plant a few pretties outside!

There really isn't any fun news to share right now but I did want to report that I am still around and have not fallen off the face of the planet! LOL. As promised several times previously, I will plan to have another giveaway as soon as things begin to settle down a bit around here.

I will leave you with a picture of one of the flowers I planted when I got home and I hope everyone has a safe and fun holiday weekend!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

No Green Thumb

Brrr! The past couple of days have been downright chilly! The temps have stayed in mid 60's but the cool wind has made it feel more like it has been in the 50's. It is supposed to get back up into the mid to high 70's for the rest of the week now but the rain is coming back according to the weather forecast! Our yard has not been completely dried out since around January. There have been several times when the top of the ground dried out enough to give us hope that all the muddy spots would be close behind! Then the rain would come again!

These are the plants we picked up on Sunday. I got 3 butterfly bushes in pink, purple and very dark purple (almost black). I also got a purple verbena, 2 red verbenas and a pink salvia. Harold chose some tomato plants to put out and I slipped in an heirloom tomato plant I have been wanting to try. I still want to get several more pretties for the 'new' area and I'm sure I will add more as time goes on. Each year I say "no more plants" and each year I give in to the gardening bug! LOL. I certainly didn't inherit my grandma's green thumb but I sure love to get out there and give it my all!

I worked on Bird in the Bower a bit last night. I can't figure out if it's going so slow because of me or the design. Maybe it's a combination of both. I know I was going at a pretty good pace until I got to these trees! To coin a phrase from the 70's - "Keep on Truckin'!" LOL.

Thank you all for stopping by! I always enjoy your visits. Stay safe, stay happy and stay well!

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

What a mess of a weekend this was! It was so physcially and emotionally drainging. I just really want to erase it all from my mind!

The Good. This weekend the tree guys finally came out to remove that giant sweet gum I had mentioned in an earlier post. They had constantly postponed with one reason or another but this weekend they called and were ready to "take her down"!

The Bad. Everything started out just fine and I had shown them all the areas to avoid and be careful of. One guy was up top cutting off some of the larger branches while my neighbor and I enjoyed the nice weather outside. Suddenly we both heard a bang and crash and looked up, scared that he had fallen. He was fine but shortly after Harold came out and told me we had no power. I went to check and one side of our house had power while the other side did not. The side without included the stove, the computer, microwave, coffeemaker, refrigerator, washer, dryer, AC unit and some lights. It seems as though that big bang had turned out to be a huge branch that hit the transformer and really damaged it! Thus the mess of a day began!

The power company came out but had to make more than one trip to access the damage and then get what they needed to repair it all. It was definitely not a minor fix. The whole transformer box had to be replaced leaving our neighbors without power during this time as well! By the time the power finally came back on around 9pm, I was exhausted, took my shower and hit the bed!

The Ugly. Luckily the tree company was insured but those guys knew that someone was going to get a big reprimand and wanted to hurry up and leave the scene of their crime thus leaving us with a bigger mess than they should have! Of course, the big power truck that back into our yard didn't help matters and only made the mess a lot bigger (but that was basically the tree company's fault as well)! You can see part of the big mess under the big power truck! It will take forever to clean up especially with all the rain and mud around here lately! Yuck!

On the good side, I have more space for planting and a lot of loose soil just waiting for some new shrubs! To help myself feel better, I bought some new plants yesterday and plan to get some more this week for that new bare area! I will leave those for a later post this week!

I am still pretty exhausted from it all and have just noticed I am using the word "thus" a whole lot in this post! Last week was a real bummer as far as stitching and blogging goes! I wasn't really in the mood for either and it showed and I certainly didn't get much done over the weekend! I guess a little break every now and then is better than pushing myself to the brink of just being sick of it all! LOL.

Until next time - stay safe, stay happy and stay well!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Slow days

I worked on Bird in the Bower again but for some reason I feel like I am stuck on the first tree! I know I am not working on it as much as usual because I have been taking advantage of the lovely weather for gardening and there is also the fact that I just haven't felt like doing much stitching lately. Hmmmm. I don't reasons like the latter!

We have started tearing down our old deck so that we can begin working on a new one. Nothing different. Pretty much the same design and the same size. The old one lasted 20 years so if this next one will last that long, I'm happy!

I will only be feeding my backyard birds to the first week in June. As many of you know I only feed the birds from Halloween to the first week of June. This allows for cold weather and nesting season. During the winter, I only use the big feeder but when nesting season arrives I use all the feeders. We always have a lot of Cardinals around our yard but there seem to be a lot more than usual this year along with an extra helping of woodpeckers!

It has been a slow week around here for blogging so until next time - have a wonderful weekend, stay safe, stay happy and stay well!