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Sunday, October 30, 2011

A big fat thanks, two SALs, and an apology (and more, lol)

     I have a lot to say today (and lots of eye candy, later).  As you all know, the last few weeks have been tumultuous for me.  Dad's birthday, my birthday, financial problems, Randi's vacation, the furor over my SAL.....  It's all been up and down and up and down.  I'm still alive though, so that's a good thing!!  And I'm getting back into my old routine, so that's a good thing too.  (And tomorrow is Sunday, whoo hooo!!!!)  So there are some good things going on for me.  It's not all doom and gloom, although some of it is.
     First off, a big, fat, HUGE thanks to all my stitchy friends.  With all that's been going on, numerous people have helped me keep my perspective.  I've been told repeatedly that I've not done anything wrong, not been rude or discourteous.  I'm so happy to have those people in my life.  Because I was starting to think that maybe, there was something wrong with me that I didn't see what all the fuss was about.  So thanks to all my supporters, who sent me emails and left me comments.  I'm totally feeling the love from my stitchy friends right now!!!  And it's making me feel as though I'm doing the right thing here.  So thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU!!!  All of you have just made my day!!  Also, I've found a couple of new groups.  Well, one, and one that I was somehow on no mail in.  IDK how that happened, but somehow I was on no mail.  Weird Yahoo!!!
     Now, for the first SAL.  I've decided, after much careful consideration, to go ahead with my SAL for Tree of Stitches, pattern created by Abi Gurden and offered on The Stitch Specialists Yahoo group.  I know several ladies who are well versed in specialty stitches, so if I have a problem, I can ask one of them (or all of them, lol.  After all, you never know what is gonna make it click!!!).  If anyone wants to join me, they are more than welcome.  Stitch day will be on Tuesdays, starting the second Tuesday in November.  As many of you know, the designer has tried to keep me from doing this.  Apparently, my friends are not good enough to be in her group.  So if you want to participate anonymously, feel free to email me.  I will say we have three anonymous participants, but won't give names or blog addys.  You can feel free to post your progress on the group, and just not mention you're in the SAL.  It takes some of the fun out of it, but I'll know you're joining me, and it's a way of getting in on some of the fun.  Plus, and honestly, I know I shouldn't feel this way, but I can't help it...  It would drive Abi and her mods crazy to see who was posting every Tuesday so they could figure out who it was participating anonymously.  (I'm sure if they figure you out, they'll ban you, but I have this great imagine of them wracking their brains to figure out who the anonymous people are.  It's a really funny picture, lol.)  So if you're interested, leave me a comment, or send me an email.  I'll probably be posting pics on Wed, because I never think to post Jesus pics on Sunday.  I always do it on Monday, and I've been SALing him for a couple of months now. 
     Now for the second (and previously unknown) SAL.  I'm doing a SAL with Charity (her blog can be seen here) for Christmas ornies.  I mentioned a while ago that I had the 2008 JCS ornie issue, and she happens to have it too.  So we're gonna be SALing ornies.  I know I'm doing Let It Snow by Casey Buonaugurio Cross Stitch Designs, Snowy Night by The Prairie Schooler, and Hardanger Wreath by Nordic Needle.  There are a couple of others that I'm considering, so I may do more.  IDK for sure yet.  If anyone wants to join us (it doesn't have to be JCS, it can be ANY Christmas ornie) feel free to comment on this post.  I told Charity we could start in November, but I don't get paid till the third, which happens to be a Thursday.  So I can't get the floss till then.  I guess we'll be starting on the next Wednesday, which would be the ninth.  So ToS (by Abi Gurden of the Stitch Specialists) on Tuesday the eight, and Ornie SAL on Wed the ninth.  To join either SAL, all you have to do it stitch on your designated project on that day of the week, and post a piccy to your blog with your progress that day or the next.  (Or the next, or whenever you get the time, lol.)  I'll be posting the blog addys of everyone who wants to join in so you non participants can go to their blog and be inspired!!!!
     And now the apology.  It's partly because of TSS, and partly because of Randi's visit, but I was very behind on my emails.  I just got caught up yesterday, so I haven't been reading or commenting on blogs (unless you posted to a group I'm in that you posted to your blog).  I'm really sorry.  I know you all look forward to comments on your blogs, and I feel bad about not being able to keep up.  I'm caught up on emails now, and so I'm hoping I can go back to doing blogs daily now as well.  (Blame Randi, everyone else does!!!)  JK, Randi.  It's not your fault as I invited you.  
     And now I'm asking for prayer, good thoughts, healing vibes, whatever you do.  My mom is going to be having surgery again this upcoming week.  Thursday she goes under the knife for a torn rotator cuff.  She had the other arm done last year, and now she has to get the left arm done.  Unfortunately, her family physician (PCP) said there is an irregularity in her heartbeat that needs to be dealt with first.  So she did  stress test Friday, and then wore the heart monitor for twenty four hours.  When they look at those two tests on Monday, they'll decide if she can have the surgery or not.  She needs it, as she is in a lot of pain.  So do whatever you do (send thoughts, vibes, love, prayers) for her that she gets though the tests and the surgery and that she heals up.  No more pain!!  Well, not from that.  She's like me, never pain free.  TIA for all of you who send her a good thought or a prayer.
     I got mail the other day.  And I have stitchy pics to show too.  At least this post isn't as long as the last one, lol.  I'll start with the mail.  One of my blogger friends, Bec, asked me to order a couple of kits for her since won't deliver to Australia.  I was all over that, lol, cause I'm such a rude person (snort).  I sent them off to her, and she sent me this!!!  
And I love it doubly because the only thermometer I have is the thermostat for my AC (which I think is broken) and I don't use it anymore.  So that makes it extra awesome.  In case you can't read it, it says, "Brisbane, Australia".  Plus, it's really pretty.  It's pink, and I love pink!!  Thanks so much Bec.  I would have done it for nothing!  I was glad to be able to help you out!!!  BTW, that Regal Tiger has me drooling!  And you all know I need another chart or kit like I need a hole in the head, lol.  I keep telling myself, NO!!!
     And now on to the other gift.  It's from another Aussie friend of mine, Kaye.  When I asked for birthday cards, Kay went over and above.  She got me a birthday card, and the cutest little kit!  It's absolutely adorable.  I love it Kaye!!  Thanks so much.  You can see it below.
  (Ain't it cute?!?)  Now I either have to find friends to SAL it with, or finish something up in my rotation so I have a spot for it.  (Soon enough, if I keep this SAL stuff up, I'm going to be doing a SAL for every day of the week, and my rotation is gonna be moot, lol.)  Thanks again Kaye.  Sorry it's a little bit blurry, but my camera wasn't liking the plastic cover of the kit.  Who knows, weird thing...  And I'm no camera expert, so I don't know how to fix it.  So this is the best of the bunch, and you're stuck with it!!!
     Lastly, some progress pics.  I finished working on May the other night at dad's house while I was dogsitting.  Vin and I had a good night, although he's a terrible, horrible, awful bed hog.  AWFUL!!!!!!  (Of course, I've been told all dogs are bed hogs, so I guess this shouldn't come as a surprise to me!!)  Anyways, I finished working on the weaving (and it is weaving and not wrapping) on May for this rotation.  I got some of it done, but not as much as I wanted to.  Piccy here:  
Hopefully, you can see all the green where I weaved the bars.  I can see it, but I know where to look, lol.  I did the top part and some of the left part too.  I'm working my way in that direction.  It was a nice, easy thing to do while watching the movie.  I took Fantastic Four with me, and watched that.  I got such a late start, I didn't get to watch the second one though.  So I'll have to catch that later.  Wrapping and weaving are pretty much mindless.  You do the same thing over and over, and all the bars have to be wrapped.  (The bars are the strands of fabby that are left where you pulled out some of them for the cut work.  You cut four strands at a time, and then skip, so you end up with a lovely pattern.  You wrap or weave the bars to give some color in between the holes.  It looks great!!)
       And lastly, the debacle of Shore Patrol.  Okay, sometimes I miscount a little bit.  This time, I can't imagine what I was thinking.  I started to do the bank below the foxes (it's a winter river scene with two foxes on the bank).  I used a light, light blue color to start.  Then added darker and darker blues to it.  So I went to figure out where I needed to start when I picked it back up.  I haven't worked on it since, oh, geez, 2006 maybe?  2005?  I'm not sure.  But I started counting from the foxes tail, thinking that would be a good start point as it was easy to count from there.  Well, I was off by not one, not two, but three whole stitches on where I worked the bank.  A little bit of it (maybe a hundred stitches) was okay.  The rest had to come out.  So here are before and after pics of the project.  Before frogging on the top, and after frogging on the bottom.  Can you see the huge area I had to frog?!? 
  Maybe four or five hundred stitches had to come out.  Ugh!!!  Took me several days, because I couldn't tell two of the colors apart very well with the light I had.  So I would be frogging right along a row, and suddenly, I 
would go to pull out the next stitch, and it wouldn't come out.  So then I had to figure out where the next stitch of the right color was (this was basically trial and error, until I found the right stitch).  So it took me a long time.  Also, I'm a little worried now as the floss is from a kit.  I had to pull a lot out.  Fortunately, I'm a floss miser, so I think I'll have enough to finish it up.  I hope so, anyways, as I wouldn't like to have to email JCA Creations and ask for more of a color.  (Note:  With my luck lately, I'll run out with three or four stitches left of one of the colors, and I won't be able to fudge it.  It would be my luck, lol.)  So I'm done with the frogging.  Since I have them on my eight inch Q-snap now, and I can't get to all of the area I frogged easily, I'm working instead on the foxes.  I have a part of the back of the center fox done.  I did have a couple of very small froggy problems with him.  It's my own fault, as I don't cross off as soon as I finish a row.  I wait until several rows are done, then I cross them all off my chart at once.  So on the first one, it didn't matter that I hadn't crossed it off.  It was a simple miscount.  I counted up to high the first time, two low the second time, and just right the third time.  They do say third time's a charm, lol.  It was only like six stitches, so nbd.  The second time, I somehow got it in my head that I had added three stitches to the end of a row that shouldn't have them.  I thought the next row should have them.  So I frogged about twelve stitches, took out the three, did the next row, and realized they should have been there after all.  (If I had marked off my chart right away, I wouldn't have fallen for myself, but I didn't, so I did.  Silly me!!)  Anyways, this is what it looks like now. 
 (I have put some of the snowy bank back in (about fifty or sixty stitches) but not a lot.)  I'm liking this color I'm putting in.  It's a great rusty shade, and I like the reds pretty well.  (Strange, because there is also some brown in it and I don't like brown.  Oh well, I be weird, lol.)  It was fun putting stitches in finally.  I was talking to Randi and stitching, and got quite a bit done.  It relaxes me to stitch, so I try to get some in every day.  Well, I try...   
     And last, but definitely not least, is a piccy of my poor Yes Dear sitting on the couch.  She's been giving me the poor, pitiful me face all day for some reason.  So I pet her and love on her and she turns tail and goes away, lol.  Gotta love her little heart!!  
     Hope you're all having a great night out there.   We're gonna just hang at home and chill for the rest of the night.  And that reminds me, I just ran out to the grocery store, and my cashier shared some disturbing info with me.  She saw a poll (I didn't ask where) that said the most popular costume for women this year is...  Casey Anthony.  I found that disturbing.  I guess she is scary, but I wouldn't want to give her any kind of credit for being scary.  No way, no how.  So now I'm just gonna chill out.  Hope you're all having a super night!!


Kaisievic said...

Hi Julie,

What a lovely long post! So glad that the card and the kit arrived safely - I hope that you enjoy doing the May Gibbs stitchery - she is a very famous Australian children's picture book author and so I thought that it would be something that you would not have in America.

Also glad that you are going ahead with your ToS SAL - I truly cannot understand all of the kerfuffle but maybe that is because I am relatively new to blogging. As I said before, you have pure intentions so what is the problem? Surely anyone who has bought the pattern can form a group with other friends who has it, too, to create a SAL?

Lastly, please count me in for your Christmas ornie SAL - if I can find my copy of the 2011 JCS mag which I bought but has now inexplicably gone missing! lol!

Hugs, Kaye xoxox

Tama said...

Ooo, nice progress on your green design. Very pretty! and I love your foxes; I looked at a pic for the pattern - nice! They'll be gorgeous when done and frogging sucks, but at least it's right now, hmm?
Yes, Dear looks really cute... I bet her sad face is adorable. And of course she won't let you know the reason WHY. With Grizabella, it's usually 'cause there's a door shut that she wants open, with Audio it's 'cause Bella won't leave him alone. Unless it's neither of those things and then they drive me crazy XD

mdgtjulie said...

Yay, another participant. That'll be fun. I'm only doing the SAL because I don't understand their objections, and neither does anyone I know. So since I'm dense (they haven't called me that, but I feel like it since I just don't get it), I'm gonna go ahead and do it, in spite of her. Silly. I really can't wait to do the kit. It got here a couple of days ago, and I was so excited. It even had wrapping paper, whoo hoo!!! Thanks again, and I hope your birthday made you as happy as mine made me.

cucki said...

wow..very lovely progress on the green design..i love it and the foxex one is so cute too..i love foxex too..
oh no..i hate frogging..this frogging job is not nice..
keep well dear and have a lovely sunday xxx

mdgtjulie said...

Funny Tama. I know YD loves to drive me crazy. There are times that I look at her and snarl, "Don't you speak English?!?". Which she doesn't, lol. Thanks. I like the way May is turning out too. And yes, the frogging is done for now. We'll see what tomorrow brings! Thanks Cucki. I'm planning a nice day stitching in front of the TV. I know frogging is not nice, but it is my own fault, after all. I just need to be more careful!! You have a lovely day today too!!

SoCal Debbie said...

What a nice long post! Too bad about the frogging on the foxes. I would have left it! Good luck with you ToS SAL. I hope there is no more drama.

Christine said...

Sending my best wishes to your Mum for her operation.
Lots of beautiful stitching in this post, I especially like the green Hardanger piece

Rachel said...

Sending thoughts and prayers for your Mom, Julie. I hope all goes well and they are able to do the surgery.

May looks amazing. I have never done hardanger, but I want to try it in the worst way, lol. So sorry you had to frog on the foxes. That much frogging sure does suck, lol. I did that over the summer with one of my pieces and it made me so angry, lol.

I am in for the ornament SAL!! It seems like I have been stitching nothing but ornaments lately and I still have a few more to go. :)

Yes Dear has the same expression my cats usually have, lol. Yup, I wish they could just tell me what they want instead of making me guess, lol!!!


rosey175 said...

Hardanger terrifies me, haha. I think I need better scissors before I even consider attempting it! Plus, I always have to frog. I'm a terribly impatient person which makes for a poor counter. 8D

My sad kitty faces almost always stand for "Feed me now. I am dying. Despite having food in my bowl a few minutes ago. That was a few minutes ago. DYING." Etc. Poor, mistreated kitties.

I'm in for the Christmas SAL! I always do a couple of ornaments every year and this will be a great excuse to kick my butt into gear! Question, though: does it have to be an ornament (ie: a thing for a tree)? I have a Christmas piece started and although not large, it's not an ornament either.

blueladie said...

Sending prayers for your mom, Julie. Cathryn

Charity C. said...

I hope all goes well with your mom! I like all the work you have so far! Everything is beautiful! I also can't wait to start the SAL with you! I think it will be a lot of fun esp since it is my first! Take care Julie and I hope you have a great Sunday!

Sharon said...

I hope everything goes well with your Mom....she will be in my thoughts tonight.

You know I joined the group when I saw the TOS on some ones blog (not sure who, possibly yours?....I am getting old) and I joined it. I was a litle what? when I was sent the list of rules. I really thought a list of rules? Anyway, I started with the digest and frankly I wasn't sure about it. I didn't ask about the patterns because I just wasn't sure about. I was frankly put off with the moderators post "about you". I thought to myself.....they should be doing that offline. Frankly, I am with you.....I keep reading it and I still don't get it. I think you are better off "banned".....I kept thinking if they can do that to you what could they do to me. I was on a Mirabilia board a few years back and I got "attacked" for just trying to make everyone calmed down. I didn't want to do that again.
Anyway sorry for the long post. I just stop in and lend my support.

mdgtjulie said...

Me too Debbie. Wishing for no more drama! I didn't know if I could fudge it that far, so I pulled it all out. Thanks Christine for the best wishes and for the compliment. Thanks Rachel. I hope so too. Hardanger is a lot easier than it looks. I really enjoy mine! Get some really sharp snips. They're a must!! Cool. I'll put you down then! I do too. I hate trying to figure out what she wants, and it makes me feel bad when I can't. At least she got lots of attention, so maybe she feels loved, even though she didn't get what she wanted!!! I've always used the cheap stork scissors for my hardanger. The blades are thin and extremely sharp. Works great for me. Yes Dear rarely needs food. She goes through a bowl (double cat bowls actually) about every three days or so. Yours sound very neglected and mistreated though, lol. Poor things! Sure, bring your Christmas piece along. I think anything Christmas will work, lol. Thanks Cathryn. Much appreciated. Thanks Charity. I can't wait for the SAL either. It's always fun to SAL something. You get that extra bit of encouragement!! Thanks for giving me the idea!!

crossstitchbibs said...

Thoughts and prayers for your mom as I definitely know what it is like to be in a lot of pain and nothing being done about it. Your stitching looks wonderful! I personally want to thank you for all the encouragement you have given me during these painful months (they think I did this to my neck when I fell in July and hurt my foot). Pain is not as bad as it was but numbness and tingling is just as bad if not worse in my arm and hand depending on what I am doing. I am able to cross stitch for about an hour so at least its something. I am with you in saying that cross stitching is my way of relaxing. Just wish I had someone who lived close to stitch with even just once a month!!

♥ Nia said...

I hope you'll have fun with both your SALs! Enjoy :)
I hope everything goes well with your mum and soon she'll be home :)

mdgtjulie said...

Awww, you're welcome Janet. You're awesome, and I would encourage you just for that. Feel free to email me any time you get frustrated. I may not answer till that night, but I WILL answer!! Thanks for the prayers too. I'll be posting an update soon. Thanks Nia, for both.

Caitlin @ Naughts Cross Stitches said...

I'm in on the ornament SAL :D I need something to keep me going I need to make another 8 or so before christmas and finish them up!

Caitlin @ Naughts Cross Stitches said...

I'm in on the ornament SAL :D I need something to keep me going I need to make another 8 or so before christmas and finish them up!

Caitlin @ Naughts Cross Stitches said...

I'm in on the ornament SAL :D I need something to keep me going I need to make another 8 or so before christmas and finish them up!

mdgtjulie said...

Looks like Blogger was acting up, lol. Welcome Mango Girl, we're happy to have you. The more, the merrier!!

Astrids dragon said...

The ornament SAL looks like one I should be joining - I'll be checking it out. As for TOS, I still haven't started mine, but you know I'll be checking on yours - good for you!