Feb 26, 2009


OK, so eleven minutes after my last post the fretting started. (I told you it would be ten, but I held out for that extra minute. Moral superiority, don't you know.) I looked at "Beyond My Heart" over and over again, in a scene right out of "Somewhere In Time" (you know, where he hypnotizes himself back in time), and I decided that the pink was just too darn bright. This was confirmed when good 'ole Aunt Chrissy came over with the GA Jasmine thread. (And I didn't even have to beg.)

As you can see, the Jasmine is a lovely light shade of lavender. The Tea Rose that I'm using is a little too pink and a little too bright. So out it comes. I will, however, keep the yellow Willow, since it's pretty damn close to the called-for Daisy. I'm sorry to disappoint y'all who commented that the pink was fine, but I feel that I must make this change for the sake of stitchy harmony here in SpinsterVille.

(You know, it occurs to me that if I put half of the mental effort that I use in fretting over stitchy dilemmas into world issues, I might actually be able to come up with a plan for peace in the Middle East. Q-snaps for everybody!)

After all of that fretting, I just didn't have it in me to start ripping out the pink, so I rummaged around in my basket and came up with this:
Woo Hoo for a little crewel happy dance! This took about five hours to stitch and it was easy breezy and very satisfying. I have one more kit like this (I think it's daisies). I also have all of Katherine's patterns in iron-on transfers, so that BAP in crewel just might become a reality after all. Either way, it was lovely to play with on a Wednesday evening:
Stewey sends his love for all of your kind get-well wishes. At the moment he is delicately prancing around the back patio looking for a place to potty. With all of the snow that we've had, his usual places are a bit "used", so he's decided which part of the house or bar-b-que grill would be best suited for a little watering. As long as it's not me or my furniture, I'm a happy camper.

Back to the laundry! I've unsheathed my sword and I'm going to slay this beast if it's the last thing I do today! If I'm not back in a day or so, please send provisions. (You know...stitching, a meal or two, Stewey, and a hunky British chef would be just perfect.)

Feb 25, 2009


Progress continues on "Beyond My Heart". I'm always interested in how fast or slow a project stitches up....(not that it's a race or anything, and God knows I wouldn't know a deadline if it bit me), but isn't it funny how some things seems to finish themselves in minutes and yet others take years?

I did something I almost never do last night. I actually decided NOT to impulsively rip out entire sections of this piece and just let them ferment overnight. As I was stitching the pink and yellow parts I got it in my big fat head that the colors were just too bright and that they had to go. The chart calls for Gentle Art Jasmine and Daisy, and since I didn't have either, I used GA Tea Rose and Willow. Now a perfectly acceptable answer to this "not having the right thread" dilemma would have been to shop over at Aunt Chrissy's, but the truth is that I didn't feel like driving the 7/10th of a mile over there. Lazy lazy lazy.

So I put the piece away and have looked at it with fresh eyes this morning and I'm happy to report that I can live with the pink and yellow. At least for now. Ask me again in ten minutes.

Stewey has the "snipples" today. He woke up with his little nose runny and he sneezed all over me a few times just to see if I was paying attention. When he was a baby (OK, I know. He's a dog. Dogs don't come in babies.), I taught him how to blow his nose. I would hold a Kleenex and he would "blow" just like a little kid. I'm going to see if he remembers it later today. At the moment, he is sporting his sleeping mask and silk pajamas in the hopes of feeling a little better. I've promised him tea and toast if he'll go outside to potty, particularly since I've just re-hung the drapes after taking them out of the dryer. Damn dog.

Seeing how it's Ash Wednesday, I suppose that I had better start thinking about the whole Lent thing. Every year I chant the mantra "40 pounds in 40 days", but then I realize that fitting into smaller jeans probably isn't in keeping with the spirit of the thing, so I don't go that route. My all time favorite idea came from a young/hip priest two years ago. He said that he was moving from one dorm room to another (they do that over at ND), and he was pulling stuff out of his closets and thinking about what a pack rat he was. Stuff all over the place. So he decided to do some major housecleaning when the idea struck him that Lent is supposed to be a spiritual house cleaning and we should really think about our messy drawers. (Hmmmm. That just didn't sound right, but I'm sure you get the idea.) So methinks that's what I'll do....take a little inventory, do a little straightening, and then see what's left in the proverbial Tupperware of my soul.

(Oh, who am I kidding? You know as well as I do that the only inventorying, straightening, and playing is going to be up there in that studio with my stash. Can you blame me? It's a hell of a lot easier to separate skeins of DMC than it is to examine transgressions, people!)

I'm off like a herd of turtles...

Feb 23, 2009


If you thought I was completely nuts before, this post will confirm it for you. I spent the better part of the weekend organizing stitching up in the studio. Yep. You read that right. Organizing. Again. For the six thousandth time. (Go ahead. I'll give you all a moment to snicker and snark amongst yourselves at what a crazy whackadoo I am.) OK, feel better now?

I prefer to think of my semi-daily organizing tantrums as "inspiration gathering". Kind of like doing research before writing a book. I figure if Doris Kearns Goodwin can take eight years to research one of her books, then I am certainly entitled to a few OCD hours up in the studio, pawing through my stash.

What can I say? I am just in love with the idea of sitting down with canvases and charts and linens and threads and playing with them all day. When I was a kid, it was Barbie. Now, it's stitchy stash. I can put things in piles or throw them in heaps and I can not clean it up for a day or two and not feel at all guilty about it. It's just the most relaxing way I can think of to spend an afternoon. If I'm not shopping for stash or organizing stash, then I'm thinking about stash, so I might as well just admit I have a problem and move on.

One of the organizing areas that I've just never seemed to tackle was writing stuff down. My sister, the illustrious Aunt Chrissy, has several stitchy notebooks that she is very faithful to. She updates them, consults them, and even carries them with her when we stash shop. (Yes, it runs in the family, so wipe that look off of your face.) I think she has been keeping these notebooks since she's been stitching, which would be about 22 years, but I can't seem to find any of the old ones when I go over and snoop through her house.

Oooops. I mean, I don't see any of her old notebooks laying around when I go over to play with my PuppyTot Nephew Bosco. (Whew! That was a close one!)

Well, on Saturday I decided to start a notebook of my own and I decided to stop making it so damn complicated. Instead of trying to re-create the wheel, I decided to just write down what the heck I'm working on so that I will know if I made any thread changes or stitch changes, or what linen I used. I also figured it would be nice to put down a start and finish date, and then I got really jiggy with it and decided to put a space for an estimated cost. (I'll probably frog that last category. Sometimes I just don't want to know what I spent on silks or linen for a project.) I also have a daily journal that tells me what I stitched on a particular day, but I seem to be using that more and more as a "what I watched on TeeVee" book or a "how many times did I want to smack Stewey today" kind of thing. Since I am already telling the whole wide world what I'm stitching every day, I might just get rid of that one or decide to donate it to the National Archives. (That would be the kind of thing that would be critical to documenting American history wouldn't it?

Progress on "Beyond My Heart" continues:I finished the basket and the stems. It's all flowers and letters from here! I really enjoyed stitching the basket. It's a combination of eyelets and satin stitches and the effect is really pretty:Considering that we are in the midst of yet another snow squall today, methinks I might actually have several hours of time on this one in the Happy Chair today. I'm still really loving the linen (30ct. Gardener's Blend from R&R), so I guess I should be happy that those linen horizons stayed open.

I see from the last post that Stewey was on the computer Friday telling you all of my secrets. Geeze, Louise. I make ONE mention of his wienie penis issues and he has to get retribution. Damn dog. Suffice it to say there will be some serious "discussing" tonight about boundaries and personal issues on the computer. If I can figure it out, I might even put some kind of parental block on here. Knowing my proficiency with this silly machine, however, I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you.

Thanks for stopping by, kids! I am, as always, astounded that you would actually like reading my drivel. Y'all should get some kind of medal or something. Maybe a cookie? Or a milkshake? Oh! I know! A big fat steaming cup of coffee with a perfect little biscotti!


Feb 20, 2009


My mom can't come to the blog right now. She's stomping around the house with the Yellow Pages looking for a lawyer, a bail bondsman, and a pharmaceutical company that will sell her sedatives in bulk. Since I just peed on the drapes a few minutes ago, I figured I better get in here and look like I'm doing something, or I'm pretty sure she's gonna' go ballistic. I might even get a smack on my heiney. (Not that Mom ever does that...she always threatens it, but then wimps out at the last minute). So until her hand actually meets my butt, we'll just keep the ASPCA on speed dial.

Let's see....what can I tell you all about? Firstly, let me report that both Mom and Aunt Chrissy had an incredible visit with Father Hesburgh yesterday. I know this, because the two of them wouldn't shut up about it all night long. They were there about a half-hour and Mom said that neither one of them cried or snotted anything out of their noses, and they got to tell Father what a huge impact he had on the family. He smoked his cigar and asked Mom all about herself and made her feel like she was a somebody instead of the colossal loser that she usually thinks she is. He gave them a very special blessing and they left there feeling like they had just had the experience of a lifetime. I'm sure she'll tell you more about it when she decides to stop muttering under her breath about malpractice and migraines.

I'm not exactly sure what happened, but Mom went to her doctor this morning and then came home and called Aunt Chrissy and yelled a lot. I think the gist of it is that another doctor that Mom went to last year for her lady parts completely ignored something and told her to keep taking some kind of pill, and now these pills are making Mom have headaches. Then I heard her screaming something about Judy Blume and facial hair and I got the hell outta' there. Bosco told me that ladies go through something called THE CHANGE, but he wasn't too sure what they CHANGED into. All I know is that when I had my "change", I came home missing two of my body parts and I had to wear a stupid cone thing on my head for a week.

So I've been sitting here trying to put it all together, and all I've come up with is that one of Mom's aunts isn't going to come for a visit anymore because somebody has paws? And Mom came home from the WalGreens with something called Sally Hansen Extreme and Speedy Facial Hair Remover instead of those Kotex thingies that I'm NOT ALLOWED TO PLAY WITH UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES WHATSOEVER! I also noticed that she had a box of wine that was a little bigger than usual, so I'm guessing we're in for a loooong night.

I'm going to get my bicycle out of the garage later and go over to Aunt Chrissy's house so that Bosco and I can look stuff up on the innernets. First I have to figure out who this Judy Blume person is. One of the things Mom said to Aunt Chrissy was: "Judy Blume was there when we hit puberty, got our periods, had our first kiss, and lost our virginity. Where the EFF is she now, huh?" I know she said "EFF" because usually when Mom's face gets that red I hear that word a LOT. So somehow I have to figure out who this lady is, and maybe I can call her on the phone or something and get her to talk my mom off the ledge?

And I have to look up thermostats, because I'm pretty sure ours is broken. I looked at it this morning when Mom was in the shower and it said that it was 48 degrees in here. Call me crazy, but that seems a little cold to me. I mentioned something about this last night, but Mom didn't hear me because she was busy pulling her pajamas over her head and then throwing them on the floor. And then, she slept in an old tank top and bike shorts from 1987! I wasn't even born yet, but I'm pretty sure that even THEN it was a bad look for her. What the hell is she thinking?

Uh oh. Looks like Mom is starting to head for the drapes! I better get outta' here and go hide in my fort under the bed. I'll write more later if I can figure out how to get the laptop under there. If you don't hear from me in a few days, please send cookies. And a dart gun.

Feb 19, 2009


I'm having day zja vooo all over again as I stitch the eyelets on the basket in this piece. Wasn't it just a week or so ago that I was stitching another basket with a specialty stitch? Hmmmm. I must be ready for spring flowers and Easter baskets.

I've promised myself that this time I will use a WORKING COPY of the chart and that I will put the stems and leaves where they are supposed to be. I've also promised myself that I will stitch this one the way the girls at Blackbird Designs designed it, and will NOT forget about the bird and/or put letters any old place I want to. Just once, I'd like to see if I can be rebel without a cause.

Aunt Chrissy and I are very excited about today. We're headed over to Notre Dame to meet Father Ted Hesburgh. He is the President Emeritus of the university and has lived a fascinating life. From the day that Chrissy moved here, she has wanted to sit down with him to thank him for the influence he's had on our family. She wants to look him in the eye and explain that it was his influence that made our dad the wonderful man he was. I'm just hoping that I can get through it without bawling my eyelashes off or snotting all over the front of my shirt. (Note to self: must put handkerchief in easily accessible place.)

My favorite Fr. Ted story comes from the night that I was leaving the university on a leave of absence. I had just started my senior year when I got the call that Mom was not going to make it and that I should probably come home. So I packed up my little apartment and put things in storage and then sat in the dark for a few minutes before picking up the phone. I called Fr. Ted's office in the hopes that I could leave a message for him, but he picked the phone up his very self! I told him that I was a senior and that I was leaving for Phoenix the next morning to go home to be with my family and my sick Mom and I wondered if maybe he could say a little prayer for us? And without missing a beat, he said "Coni, I pray for you everyday". Just like that. Matter of fact, like it was something he did as routinely as brushing his teeth. I'm sure that what he meant was that he prayed for the Notre Dame family in general, but I took it to mean that I was in his prayer my very self and I felt much better.

Needless to say, I am as nervous about this as I would be if I were meeting the Pope. Or Ina Garten. Either way, I just hope I don't make a complete idiot out of myself.

Feb 18, 2009


So it turns out that I didn't actually go to medical school, and I have no business diagnosing myself. (With anything at all, as a matter of fact). What I thought were sinus headaches are actually cluster migraines and I will probably have to go get some meds to deal with them once and for all. Damn, drat, and phooey. I thought I had outgrown these once I made it out of my 20's. With my stupid luck, this is probably the vestibule to menopausal hell.

My purpose in writing to you again this evening is that I just HAD to share the fact with y'all that Aunt Chrissy and I have just returned from a simply WONDERFUL RESTAURANT EXPERIENCE, and I feel like my faith is restored in humanity once again. Woo Hoo! We went to Carraba's, and it was, to put it mildly, perfection. The server (Hi, Jessica!) was lovely, the salad plates were ice cold, the entree plates were steaming hot, and Jessica even concocted some pasta dish for me that was just what I needed after two days on the bathroom floor. (Now as for the cold salad plate and hot dinner plate....my dad always said that was one of the marks of a restaurant that was paying attention.) And yes, in case you were wondering, I did call the manager over to gush about what a nice meal we had and I left a $15 tip. So there.

Now before you think that Aunt Chrissy and I dine out every night, I should probably clarify that it is a real treat for us, and we actually don't do it very often at all. I love to cook and we probably only go out once a month or so, so when we DO manage to do it we are tickled purple when it's a good experience. I would imagine that we're not alone in this thought with the current state of economic affairs, so why can't AppleFreakinBees get a damn clue and step it up a bit? Huh?

No matter....we'll go back to Carraba's again and will most certainly have another wonderful meal. Thank you, Mr. Carraba! Good night!


I am reeeeaaaaally green around the gills today and not feeling any better, but I can't be bothered with a silly bout of food poisoning or a sinus migraine, now, can I? I have places to see! People to do! Things to go! (Um...something like that). Besides, I come from hearty peasant stock, so lying about with a cold rag on my head just won't do. (At least that's what I keep telling myself. As soon as I actually start LISTENING to myself, I'll let you know.)

Your tender ministrations were just what this poor, tired heart needed. As I explained to Stewey, sometimes you just want your Mommie. This was after he went outside for a pit stop and was scared half to death by something rustling in the bushes. He ran so fast into the house that he missed the second step and scraped his little weenie-penis on the threshold. Oh, poor dear. He just wanted to curl up in my lap with little tears in his eyes. So I wiped his little face and petted his little ears and told him it was OK. Sometimes you just want your Mommie.

Geeze, Louise, we're a pair today, aren't we?

Before I forget....I was asked if I remember the designer name of the Poofy Hearts canvas. I don't, but Aunt Chrissy seems to remember that it is Alice Peterson. I'm so sorry that I am not better about journaling such things. I need to make a concentrated effort to do so in the future. After all, it's not fair of me to put stuff on here and not credit it properly, so I better hop to it.

In the interest of trying to expand my linen horizons, I decided to play with my stash a bit to see what I had in the way of fabric. The last several weeks I have been rather frustrated that I can't seem to figure out what I like to stitch on. I've read a lot about the differences between Zweigart and Wichelt, soft and dense versus stiff and sheer, etc. etc. etc. This just left me wondering if I really AM sure of what I like. I read with great intensity all of your blogs, looking for the type of linen that you're using on various projects, but I still couldn't get it through my thick head what I should use as my "go to" linen.

Turns out, I'm a boob. I pulled a piece of 30ct. "Gardener's Blend" from the stash and really sat down and looked at it. The linen itself is rather stiff and sheer, so I presume it to be from R&R with a Wichelt base (?), and I presumed that I would hate the guts out of it. But as I REALLY looked at it, I discovered that the color and the marbleing on it was really quite beautiful. So, being the dutiful student of all things stitchy that I am, I decided to just work with it.

This is "Beyond My Heart" from Blackbird Designs. It is the Loose Feathers Pattern #32, and it's part of the whole "mystery" thingie that I've been collecting but have no clue as to why or when I will stitch it. Something about this chart in particular, though, seemed to call to me to be stitched onto my trial linen. Here's the start so far:OK, first of all, you should probably know that this is a totally CRAP picture and that it might not actually be my fault today. It's very dreary and dark, and I can't seem to get a good shot. So trust me...the linen is a really pretty greenish brownish yellow with a brown marble pattern on it. I'm using Gentle Art overdyed threads, and only had to change three of the colors that I didn't have in my stash.

Surprise, surprise, but this is really very lovely to stitch! Not two days ago, I told Aunt Chrissy that I would NEVER use stiff/sheer linen because it was awful to work with and the threads got caught in it and blah blah blah....just like I knew what I was talking about. Turns out (as per my usual) that I didn't.

So next time you're feeling adventurous, try something that you NEVER thought you'd try (like brussel sprouts). You just might be pleasantly surprised and then have to tell me all about it! Woo Hoo!

Feb 17, 2009


So Aunt Chrissy and I decided to drop off some food at the Neighbors in Need Food Drive over at the TeeVee station, and afterwards I asked her if we could grab a bite to eat. Since we were driving in that direction, we kinda' both looked at each other and said "Hey, let's go to AppleFreakinBees. We never go there, so let's give it a try."

We pulled into the parking lot with great anticipation. I mean, come on. It's AppleFreakinBees. How hard could this be?

I. Want. To. Die.

BAD table, BAD service, and even WORSE food. It was so bad that I did something I have never ever done in my whole entire life. I complained. I marched myself right over to the manager and said "Please take this check and run my credit card immediately so that I can get out of this restaurant before my head explodes."

He wanted to discuss. I did not. Suffice it to say, he handed me back my credit card, told me he was sorry for the bad experience, and sent me on my way.

Although I should have been very proud of myself for taking the flashing DOORMAT sign off of my forehead for once, I was physically shaking and didn't stop doing so until Aunt Chrissy dropped me off and I made it into the house muttering to myself that I will never ever ever never go out for dinner again. Ever.

Now, in order to fully appreciate the full magnitude of this, you should probably know that I am what can only politely be described as as IDIOT when it comes to going out to dinner and leaving a tip. I am rather famous for leaving tips in the 70-80% range, and I have even been known to leave a $10 tip for a $5 meal. I am EXTREMELY thankful for anybody who works as a waiter or waitress, since I know that I would never be able to do it, so I try to show my gratitude with my tips. I also really appreciate a good meal. The problem is, however, that I have gotten so accustomed to doing this, that I will leave a big tip even if the meal and/or service sucked. (Note: I was fully prepared to leave a 20% tip last night, even. Silly, silly me.)

You should also know that I am incapable of speaking up for myself. As a matter of fact, I was physically pushed OUT OF THE WAY of the new chart bins at my LNS once by a very tiny little woman who apparently needed to see these charts worse than I did. AND! Instead of saying "Pardon me, madam, but I will be happy to move when I'm damn good and ready", I stumbled away thinking "Wow, she sure must have had her Wheaties this morning to get ME out of the way". See? Doormat. So for me to actually speak up about something that was displeasing to me was MONUMENTAL!

I hearken back to living in Margate, New Jersey. I had just moved into my little condo and decided to walk down to the local grocery store for some provisions. I asked for a half-pound of ham at the deli but got roast beef instead. And I stood there looking at the package fretting over what to do about it when a lady started bitching at the deli guy that the sliced meat that he was pulling out of the case was too fatty and that he had better not even THINK about giving it to her, when I wondered why I couldn't be more like her. Despite living there six years and seeing that lady on a regular basis, I never caught on. Sigh.

I also hearken back to something somebody told me once about Mom. Before you jump to any conclusions, you should know that Mom was one of the loveliest people you would ever want to meet, and I don't think I heard her say a negative thing about or to anybody about anything at all. Ever. So after she passed away, one of my friends said "You know, your mom was one of those kinds of people who could tell you to go to hell and you'd look forward to the trip." He went on to explain that if she was unhappy about something, she had a way of calmly and politely telling you how you were going to fix it and make the world a better place in the process. So why didn't I get THAT gene?

Fast forward to about 8pm: Projectile up-chucking, combined with what I assumed to be an aneurysm. I spent the night on the bathroom floor wishing for a sharp object to stab into my eye repeatedly. All I can figure is that my brain decided to have a sinus migraine at the exact same moment my tummy decided to say adios to whatever the hell I made the mistake of eating the last eighteen years. Oey.

Today is hangover day. Stewey and I are in fresh jammies with some Peppermint Tummy tea and dry toast. The headache is down to a dull roar, but I'm talking nicely to it in the hopes that it will go away. Forever.

So forgive me, please. I don't have anything stitchy to report. I do, however, want to THANK YOU ALL from the bottom of my dehydrated little heart for your fabulous comments on "Strawberry Garden" and your suggestions about the Poofy Hearts.

More later.....we promise.

Feb 16, 2009


Woo Hoo! Happy Dance! I finished "Strawberry Garden" on Friday evening. I'm not sure about the "2009"...methinks it might be a little LARGE, but Aunt Chrissy said she thought it was just fine. She also said that this piece reminds her of Mom, which made me feel very good. As you can see, I did decide to put the letters on at the last minute.

On Saturday I had what can only be described as a Stitchy Epiphany. There I was, sitting in my happy chair minding my own business, when POOF!...a vision flashed before my eyes. Now if this has ever happened to you, you'll know exactly what I mean. If it hasn't, just chalk it up to me being a stitchy freak of some kind and move on.

Years and years ago I bought a painted canvas of "floating hearts". I think this was the second painted canvas that I ever bought, and I just HAD TO HAVE IT the very moment I saw it. Then it went into the studio and never made it out again. I even went so far as to put it into the "Out of Sight, Out of Mind" basket.

Well, I'm not sure if it was the Laura J. Perin Valentine or what, but I suddenly "saw" this canvas in my head...all stitched up. The little hearts were "puffy" and the larger hearts were all stitched in very intricate, very compound stitches using Watercolors. I don't think I "saw" the background or the border, but given the fact that this was my first stitchy apparition, I figure I was pacing myself.

So I went upstairs and pulled the canvas out of the basket and decided to start rummaging through my thread stash to see if I could figure something out that would approximate what I had in my head. And that's when it happened:
Not only did I have threads that would work, I had THE EXACT THREAD THAT I SAW IN MY POOF! As I opened drawer after drawer looking for a particular color, I found myself saying "Oh look, here's the purple in Flair. Oh, and the yellow Splendor. Wow, amazing how these Watercolors are all exactly the right blend of colors."

By the time I got all of the threads pulled, I was totally freaked out.

So I ran downstairs and called Aunt Chrissy and told her (quite breathlessly, I must admit) all of the gory details of what had just happened. She was totally unimpressed and reminded me that I had colorized this canvas at least nine times in the last three years, so I was probably just finding all of the threads that I had purchased over and over again.

Then, when she came over later in the evening for dinner and stitching, she took one look at my "revelation", went over to her side of the table and muttered "dumb ass" under her breath. I don't think she was impressed by my new-found talent. At. All.

I played around a little bit with this yesterday and almost finished the puffy hearts. Now all I have to do is figure out what the heck to do with those larger hearts. I thought that they should be done in really complex stitches using the Watercolors, but now I'm wondering if maybe bargello would be cool? I love me some bargello, that's for sure, so maybe THAT'S what I was really seeing instead?
As for the border, I'm thinking WAFFLES! (Funny, but as I just typed that, I could hear the voice of Eddie Murphy playing Donkey in Shrek...."Tonight we'll do some manly bonding and in the morning, I'm making WAFFLES!)

Maybe I should switch to decaf?

Feb 13, 2009


I did frog the top border and re-stitched it properly. Whew. That really feels better! I also re-worked the corners a bit so that the edges would be a little better. Not sure if it looks right, but apparently I was so "off" in the vase and flowers that it threw the border. Damn.

Stewey and I would like to wish all of you a very Happy Valentine's Day. We hope that you will spend it with someone that you love, and if they're not available, please put on a pot of tea, and we'll be right over! Kiss Kiss, y'all!

Feb 12, 2009


"If I knew I was supposed to be comfortable in my own skin I would have used better moisturizer." -- Ms. Coni J. Rich Her Very Self on the occasion of FINALLY doing laundry

Eleven loads down, two to go!

And yes, in case you're wondering, all eleven are mine. I have not yet started to take in other people's laundry for some extra stitching money, and Stewey refuses to allow me near any of his wardrobe.

I used to be a person who did all of her laundry once a week -- wash, dry, fold, put it away. I was very smug about it too.

Then it was every other week.

Then I started to do it when I ran out of underpants.

Then I stopped wearing underpants under my eighteen-year old sweatpants.

Then I stopped going into the closet because you couldn't see the floor, and besides, when you wear pajama tops and sweatpants all day who needs to go into the closet anyway?

Then I woke up, smacked myself in the head and realized that this laundry was NOT going to march itself into the laundry room and voluntarily jump into the machine with some suds and all-color bleaching product.

Why is it that when I lived in an apartment complex and had to haul laundry to a completely separate building, I managed to do so with regularity and discipline? AND! I even had to make sure to have the requisite number of dimes and quarters for the extortionist who doled out the tokens to use the washers and dryers. Now that the freakin' laundry room is ten steps away from the place where the clothes usually hit the floor, I can't be bothered to actually put them in the $*#&% washer and then just TURN IT ON?!!!! You'd think that I had to find a river and then pound this crap against a rock or something. But ALL I HAVE TO DO IS PUT IT IN A PERFECTLY CAPABLE PIECE OF MACHINERY AND TURN IT ON!!!!!

I swear this is why I will not be accepted into any decent assisted living facility.


I have lust in my heart...yes I do.
Oh, sweet cup of simple perfection!


Well, there is a LITTLE progress to report. I probably would have completed the border last night if it weren't for the buttonhole pinwheels in the center of the blue flowers:Oey vey...I had the darnedest time trying to figure these out! I think I must have "doodled" it a dozen times before the light bulb hit me on the head and I went upstairs to haul out my stitch books. Good 'ol Reader's Digest....their "Complete Guide to Embroidery Stitches" allowed me to get these suckers on the linen without having to wash my mouth out with soap afterwards.

Now as for that border....I did something on the top of it that I have NEVER done in all of my stitchy life: I reversed the stitches! When Aunt Chrissy taught me to stitch, she was very clear that your x's must always be done the same way. She said this rather pointedly, so I took it as gospel and had never broken the rule. Up until last night. Stupid me...I turned the project a 1/4 turn (which I KNOW not to do), but what can I say? Jeremy Irons was demanding my full attention and I was all the way across the top before I realized my mistake. Now I have the monumental task of talking myself off the ledge about ripping all of those stitches out. The little devil on one shoulder says "Come on, screw it. You know you wanna' leave 'em in there and get this thing finished. Besides...who will ever know?" and the little angel says "Now, Coni Jo. You know that you will keep yourself up nights thinking about this, so why not address the issue at once and make it all right with the world again."

Considering the fact that my little devil almost ALWAYS beats the crap out of my little angel, I just might leave well enough alone and not tell anybody about this.

Oh. Wait. I just did that.

My other dilemma with this piece is the argument as to whether or not I need to add the letters. I am completely "sampler-impaired", so I am not exactly up on all of the technicalities in the Official Sampler Rule Book, but instinct tells me that I probably should go ahead and put them in there for a more "finished" look. Besides...the girls at Blackbird Designs surely know a whole lot more about needlework than I could ever hope to, so maybe I'll try it their way and see how it goes?

I am determined to learn about samplers. I have a great appreciation for them, but am sad that I have not yet taken the time to learn about their history. I am thinking that a good web search for some books might be in order this afternoon.

I'll leave you with a little pic of my boy. He has been particularly snuggly these last few days because we're having high winds and I don't think he likes the noise. That, and his evil nemesis, Steve Squirrel has been eating all of the feed out of the bird feeder this morning. You will be happy to know, however, that I confiscated the little pea shooter that Stewey borrowed from his cousin. (Bosco went to work with Aunt Chrissy today, so he told Stewey he wouldn't need it.) Methinks these boys need better supervision.

Feb 11, 2009


Only two blue flowers added last night, but I'm determined to finish this piece before the weekend. It's still very lovely to do...the variety of the stitches, as well as the linen makes it a treat (and not a chore). I think I can probably finish this up tonight or tomorrow if I put some serious time into it. Then it's on to hearts for Valentine's Day!

I'm still tweaking the 'ol rotation. I haven't driven myself nuts over my WIP's for a while now, so maybe I should just keep on keeping on and enjoy it while it lasts. I really don't have any specific need to finish anything in particular, but I know that I will be jonesing for a finish pretty soon, so I better hop to it.

That's about it on the stitchy front. We're rainy and dreary today, so this might be a great Happy Chair day...stay tuned!

What follows is the result of a very long and sleepless night in which our heroine contemplated life and its meaning and whether or not she should keep her big fat mouth shut. If you would prefer to think of me as a cardigan-wearing, sensible shoe-buying bespeckled little Spinster who has bluebirds flying about her, then please continue to do so and stop reading now.

If, however, you will indulge me, I figure I can do whatever the h-e-double-toothpicks I want to on this here blog, so I'm going to get it out before my head explodes.

As I'm sure you've gathered by now, I am the most tolerant and open minded person on the planet. Quite frankly, I could care less what the heck anybody else wants to do with their lives, because I am too busy trying to figure out my own. But when it comes to the world's defenseless....those that cannot speak or advocate or help themselves, I pretty much have a zero tolerance policy for stupidity. I will, in short, go to the mattresses when I think somebody has exploited or hurt an animal, a child, a person with disabilities, an older person, or anybody else who just needs a little help every now and then to make it through. Being able-bodied or able-minded and stupid does not qualify you for my help. Being in need of respect, dignity, or a ride to the dry cleaners will get me every time.

Now as for this "situation" with Ms. Suleman....please understand that I think bringing a child into the world and then raising it up into a fully-realized person is one of the most noble pursuits on the planet. I am not a mother. I have never had children. But I know delusional when I see it and I think I have the right to express my opinion that this woman should be prosecuted for neglect. And, I think that these 14 children should be placed in protective custody with families that have the financial, emotional, and physical wherewithal to support them properly. I'm sorry, but the answer of "I'm going to be present for them" is simply not adequate to the questions: How are you going to support these kids? Pay the mortgage? Provide them with health and dental insurance? How will you feed them? How are you going to transport them? How are you going to pay the light bill, or more importantly, the grocery bill, which will certainly be enormous. Do you really think that "working once you've completed your studies in a year and a half" is a good plan? And how long do you think it will take to pay off the $50K in student loan bills and the million-dollar plus hospital bills? You're going to move into a bigger house? How? And why, in God's name, do you need a publicist?! Why don't you just tell the truth and confess that you will support these children with the proceeds from your book, movie of the week deal, talk show appearances, and any other shenanigans you've cooked up. Why don't you just look the world in the eye and tell them that you knew exactly what you were doing and that you knew the world would come running with diapers and lotion and contracts that will allow you to spend as much time on camera as your little heart desires? (Man, that was harsh, wasn't it? Even for me...)

YES! I know that children are a gift from God, and I am the first one in line to defend and support anyone who has a calling to birth and raise a large family. I do not begrudge anybody the opportunity to do so, but I think that somebody has to be an advocate for children (since they can't advocate for themselves), and ask the hard questions and make sure there's a plan in place BEFORE the stork comes along. And the idea that a seven-year old sibling will just have to get over it because "life isn't fair" doesn't exactly make me sleep at night. And YES! I watch the Duggar family and am fascinated by them, but I also note that the Duggar family is a self-sufficient tax-paying, home-schooling, property-owning family who lives according to their religious principles. They also are debt free and live in a home that is filled with order, love, discipline, and a sense of community.

I'm pretty sure that God is in the process of writing the following letter to us (I don't have visions or anything like that, and I'm pretty sure I would have no clue as to how one speaks in tongues, but here goes). And I know you'll forgive me for going completely off topic at the end, but once I start twirling around in a rant it's best to just let me go until I tire myself out:

Hi Everybody, God here.
I'm sure you'll forgive me if I'm up here shaking my head and muttering to myself. I have to say, you people sure know how to screw stuff up! I give you the gift of being able to reproduce and y'all go out there and fool around with it. Don't tell me that if I didn't want you to use it I wouldn't have inspired the science behind fertility, etc. I did that because I'm a big fan of science generally and I figured you would know how to properly handle it. Silly me. And as for all of the other crap that you're throwing around down there like war and famine and genocide, well I have to tell you that I'm not one bit happy about that either. And this OctoMom thing, the economy, steroids in baseball, and all of the other stupid stuff that hits the paper in the morning is also a colossal pain in my holy a**. Stop it. Get a clue and wake the hell up already. I won't even go there when it comes to the environment or global warming, or all of the other stuff you do to mess with my universe. Suffice it to say that there's only so much crap you can mess with before it all comes tumbling down. And no amount of fretting will fix it. So that's it, kids. Pay attention. Look out for one another, will you? And use the sense that I gave you to quit playing around and get on with it. OK?
P.S. You're welcome for Sullenberger, by the way.

Thank you, kind and dear readers for indulging me. If I've offended, p****ed off, or saddened anybody out there, I am truly sorry. Come back tomorrow. It will be better. I promise.

Feb 10, 2009


Forgive me. It is 11:54pm and I have just finished watching the Dateline episode about OctoMom. I. Am. Speechless. And in the interest of saving you from my rant, I decided to share with you instead.....

The Spinster Stitcher Presents Her Happy Meal!

The Appetizer:

A little salad:The Main Course:

And dessert:

Um, waiter? I think I'm going to need another napkin. And some ice water.

I suppose that the only thing that would make this meal even MORE perfect would be if all of you would join me at the table, along with Ina Garten and Mr. Stewey His Very Self. Pass the Merlot.

We will resume our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow, kids. In the meantime, I wish you good sleeps and happy dreams! Woo Hoo!

Oh, and P.S....I edited the last post to include the story of how my boyfriend Robert came to call me on Valentine's Day (in case you're interested in that sort of thing.)


This is my boyfriend, Chef Robert Irvine. Now for those of you who actually happen to know Chef Robert Irvine, let me just say that he is my boyfriend only my own whacky little screwed up fantasy boyfriend kind of world. Yes, I am indeed on another planet, but it's OK. They know me here. (And if you're wondering why I do not call Chef Gordon Ramsey my boyfriend, it's because I have just discovered that he is only 30-something and I am not. Also, he throws things. Like Beef Wellington. And brussel sprouts.)

Almost exactly one year ago, I was a lonely Spinster sitting in her little house looking out the window. It was a cold and dreary day and when I looked at the calendar, I realized that it was Valentine's Day. I was very sad.

When the telephone rang, I figured it would be the Target Pharmacy automated voice mail message telling me that I had a prescription ready to pick up. Either that, or it would be a telemarketer wanting to know my opinions of the latest Jonas Brothers album. Either way, I wasn't exactly rushing to pick up the receiver and hit the "talk" button.

"Hello, my darling! I've called to wish you a Happy Valentine's Day!"

And that's when my vision went dark, I am pretty sure I peed myself, and I fell to the floor in a state of total disbelief. It was my Robert.

*****EDITED TO ADD*****
Chef Robert Irvine really DID call me on the telephone. My friend Cheryl was attending the National Builder's Show in Orlando, Florida and he was one of the guest speakers. Knowing that I am a HUGE fan of Robert's, my friend Cheryl walked right up to him (cell phone in hand) and said "My friend Coni is a HUGE fan of yours. Would you call her to wish her a Happy Valentine's Day?" So he did. (See above for darkness, peeing, falling, etc.) She also managed to get an autographed picture of him for yours truly, but alas, it has gone missing and I can only pine for it in my pitiful little way. Sniff sniff. So Robert, my love, if you read this, please send another picture for me, won't you? Bedroom wall size would be great. Thanks.
*****END OF EDIT*****

Oh, my dearest one. Won't you please call me again? I promise not to cry this time and/or babble incoherently about how you changed my life or how I know all about Absecon, New Jersey, or how my little Stewey thinks you're too sexy for your whisk.

I'll be calm. And smart. And funny and witty and charming and everything you could possibly want in a Hoosier Spinster Valentine. I won't contemplate tattooing any part of myself with anything remotely related to you and/or your corporation Irvine Thyme, LLC. I will be respectful and engaging, and I might even tell you that I can make a pretty mean cottage pie. Pastry, however, eludes me.

So be well, my dear one. I wait with breath that is bated for the day that you return to the Food Network. I promise to dutifully DVR every episode and to give them my undivided attention. In my pajamas. With a nice glass (or bottle) or Shiraz.

Oar Vwa Me A More.

Feb 9, 2009


Miss Deb Her Very Self: I made the heart look poofy by first using DMC floss (all six ply) and stitching horizontally and then over the top of that vertically. Then I used Rainbow Gallery's Flair over the top of the DMC, stitching vertically twice.

Now if you actually understood that, will you please explain it to me? I think I managed to just confuse myself!


I had an early-ish dentist's appointment today. OK, maybe 10am isn't exactly early, but I was up rather late and had a hard time getting out of the big girl sleigh bed this morning.

Anywhoose....I puttered about and had my coffee and then realized that I had to rush if I was going to make it on time. (I do SO hate to be late.) I managed to make it with minutes to spare, got my new filling on the root canal tooth and was on my merry way. Woo Hoo for me!

When I came home to change into my "inside the house" wear, I suddenly realized why God made some people morning people and some people not so much (heavy sigh):
Aunt Chrissy and Bosco came over on Friday night for Chinese food. We spent a fair amount of time up in the studio and I managed to get more organizing done. I swear that somebody is coming into my house in the middle of the night and rifling through my stuff. I mean, it was all tidy a minute ago and suddenly it's a mess again. Must be the same person who keeps piling up the laundry. Wonder if I should install a nanny cam?

I started Laura J. Perin's "Daisy Collage" and am loving every minute of it. It doesn't look like much now, but once I get into those boxes and start filling them in it will be wonderful!
We stopped at Needle Nest on Saturday to pick up a thread or two, and Chrissy inspired me to also stitch LJP's "This Heart's For You"...a freebie on her website. At first I thought I would do this on red canvas with white threads, but after I played around a little bit, I decided to do the FIRST one in pinky-reds and pinks on sparkly white canvas. I'm sure that I'll probably do this one more than once, so that red canvas won't go to waste.

I have been so inspired by all of the rotations out there, and am thinking about getting back into mine, but with some changes. I love the idea of doing a particular project on a particular day, but I was wondering what would happen if I decided to do a particular type of stitching on a particular day? For example, Monday could be cross stitch, Tuesday painted canvas, Wednesday counted canvas, Thursday crewel, etc. etc. I'm still tweaking, so stay tuned. At the rate I'm going, I will probably just try to get "Strawberry Garden" finished and framed before Spring officially arrives in all her glory.

Hope y'all had a splendid weekend and that the week ahead is full of fun and stitchy goodness for you!

Feb 8, 2009


Hi kids....just a quickie tonight.

CAROL: You left a comment on my last post asking if we'd like to meet up at HOS or NN sometime. I thought I was responding to you, but got Marsha instead (sorry again, Marsha). Can you please direct me to your blog or give me your email address?

DAWN: You asked about the material under my Q-snaps. This is a trick that I learned from other stitchy bloggers. It's inexpensive craft felt cut into long strips. When you place one strip in between your linen and the Q-snap, it makes the tension much tighter and it also protects your linen and stitching. Pretty cool, huh? You can get jiggy with it and match your felt to your project if you like, but then you'd be REALLLLLY nuts like me. I bought mine at Michael's for 50 cents a sheet. (A sheet being 8 1/2 inches X 11 inches).

Gotta run......Big Love is on in a few and I have to get the popcorn popped or Stewey will throw a hissy.

Feb 6, 2009


I give you Exhibit A:And now, Exhibit B:

Do you notice anything glaringly wrong with the first pic versus the second? Do ya'? Well, I didn't either for a good two hours yesterday until I finally realized that I had some stems and leaves on the right side IN THE COMPLETELY WRONG PLACE.

This was a rather interesting exercise in Chart Reading 101 for me, and I confess to having to break out the copy machine and the yellow highlighter. When I first started stitching, Aunt Chrissy showed me how to make a working copy of the chart and then use a highlighter to mark off the stitches that you had just completed. I did this for about two months before I got cocky and decided that I could work from the original chart and not make any marks on it at all. So there. Guess this one really showed me.

After frogging, I settled in to get some of the strawberries and flowers completed. I think that I have blue flowers to go and then I'm on to the border and letters. I will confess that I didn't even realize there were letters on this until last night, so if y'all want to send me back to Stitchy Kindergarten, please feel free to do so. (I just hope I fit in the little desks.)

Stewey has informed me that if I don't do laundry and housecleaning today he's going to call the ASPCA. I made the mistake of joining their organization so that I could get a window decal (to tell the local fire department that there's a pet in the house in the event of fire), but Stewey thinks this is some kind of fraternity for him to gather with like-minded puppy tots that are so "neglected". I explained to him that there are pups out there who don't even have a nice warm bed to sleep in...let alone freshly laundered sheets and a snack on the pillow each evening, but he didn't seem interested. Methinks I've created a monster.

I do hope that you have a splendid stitchy weekend, wherever you may be. We are expected a BIG THAW here, so I'm thinking that a car wash and garage clean out might be in order. Happy trails!

Feb 5, 2009


OK, I admit it. I am a complete idiot when it comes to a) computers, b) popular culture, and c) interacting socially with other people. So you can see how FACEBOOK was a nightmare of epic proportions for the six and a half minutes I was on it.

It all started innocently enough. I was curious, that's all. I wanted to be able to chat and be hip and "with it". I wanted to be able to say "Why, yes. Of COURSE I'm on Facebook. Here's my homepage (or is it address?). Oh crap. I tried. I really did. But it was JUST TOO MUCH for this Spinster to process in a day.

I loved re-connecting with people that I'd lost contact with, but somehow I received hundreds of emails asking me to be friendly with people that I don't think I had ever met and/or heard of. I got so confused....I wanted to know how I knew these people and then the damn thing just had a mind of its own, so I did what any rational person would do. I ran away and hid under a blanket until it stopped.

I didn't make any progress on Strawberry Garden last night, but I did catch up on all of the DVR'd programs that seem to multiply like rabbits. What IS it about stuff in this house that seems to foster multiplication? First it was my stitchy stash. Then it was the pile of laundry. Now it's TeeVee programs. Could there be something in the water? Did somebody slip some kind of mass-multiplication fertility-inducing device into Chez Spinster without me noticing it? Oh boy, if Stewey suddenly starts sporting a "World's Best Dad" coffee mug I'm moving. To England.

Speaking of Stewey....he and I were awakened at o'dark hundred today by the howling of coyotees. I'm not kidding. Really. Howling. Of. Coyotees. In Indiana! Aunt Chrissy and I saw one last summer in the field behind my house, so I know he's out there, but apparently last night was the semi-final of Coyotee Idol. It was fascinating and creepy all at the same time. Stewey was not interested, however, and told me to wake him when it was over.

Today was supposed to be house cleaning and laundry day, but in the effort to reduce my carbon footprint, I've decided that sitting in the Happy Chair with tea and stitching would be much more advisable. Who needs all of that hot water, detergent, and dust clouding up the atmosphere? (You're welcome, Mr. Gore. Just doing my part, Mr. Vice President. Say Woo Hoo to Tipper for me, won't you?)

So I'll leave you with a pic of my stitching and a promise to stop being so damn CHATTY. I don't know what's gotten into me, but I can't seem to keep it brief these days:

Feb 4, 2009


Well gee, this is kind of awkward...

I'm sorry that I opened my big mouth and mentioned the Stitch in Public Day. I received an email invitation/press release and thought I was passing info along, but now I'm not so sure that I should have done that. So....if you are interested in this thing, please call Bea Lies at 574-257-1833. Apparently, Bea is the President of the South Bend/Michiana chapter of the EGA, so she should be the one to give you information. (I'm not even a member of their guild, so I probably should not have invited the whole wide world to come to the mall that day!) I do sincerely apologize if I've offended anybody out there who is a member of that guild and would prefer for me to just mind my own bees-wax.

But I can tell you that Mark (at the mall), was lovely and said it probably wouldn't be a problem, but he just wanted to have some idea of what was what.

Crawling back under my rock now....

Feb 3, 2009


It doesn't look like a lot of progress, but I finished the stems and leaves and moved on to the flowers. This, of course, was a relief, since the flowers are done using Crescent Colors (as opposed to Weeks Dye Works and Gentle Art...what is UP with the quality/texture of these threads?!).

I'm still really enjoying this and think it's due to the linen...Barn Owl by Birds of a Feather. Thanks to faithful stitchy friend Donna (Needleworker Not In Paradise), I learned that Linens by Design is now making these lovely fabrics. Woo Hoo! BOAF is one of my favorite stitchy sources, so I'm glad to know we can continue to get their fabulous fabrics.

I received word that National Stitch in Public Day in this area will be held at the University Park Mall food court. It's Saturday, February 7th, from 10-3. If I can convince her to go, Aunt Chrissy and I will be there with bells on and our stitchy bags in tow! I haven't joined our local EGA yet (I am a member-at-large), but one of the lovely ladies in Crewel class sent me the info. I suppose this will mean a trip to the mall....a place I have only visited twice since moving back to South Bend in 1999. Sigh.

I'm off to the kitchen to concoct something for dinner. In honor of Ina Garten's birthday today (Hi Ina! Happy Birthday! Waving to you from Mishawaka! Love your show and everything you have ever done in your whole entire life!), I am thinking of making something from one of her cookbooks. Shrimp scampi, anyone?

Stewey's in the guest room, furiously cleaning out the closet. Methinks his "sleepy" pictures really p***** him off, so looks like he'll be bunking elsewhere tonight. Oh well. More room for me!

Feb 2, 2009


The title of this post is quite appropriate for today, since I need to learn how to leave well enough alone. Let's start at the beginning, shall we?

Saturday dawned bright and sunny and Chrissy and I loaded up the provisions to drive over to House of Stitches in LaPorte. Yes, I know it's only a 40 minute drive, but one must be prepared now, mustn't one?

Before we could leave, however, I had to contend with this:
This is a nine-pound shorty Jack Russell terrier who LOVES to sleep. He loves it so much, in fact, that I was forced to stand over him yelling: "STEWEY! WILL YOU PLEASE GET THE HELL UP ALREADY AND GO OUTSIDE TO POTTY SO MOMMIE AND AUNT CHRISSY CAN GET ON THE FREAKIN' ROAD ALREADY!"
After ten minutes of "sleepy puppy" face we get the requisite number of tummy rubs, a few ear scratches, and then...maybe...if we're lucky...the damn dog decides to get up for the day.

(Now I know you're wondering how I obtained these pictures. So I'll tell you. On Saturday (see above), I was so frustrated that Little Lord Fauntleroy wouldn't get out of bed that I said (and I quote): "I'm going to go get the camera and take a picture of you for the blog so that the whole stitchy world will see what I have to put up with in the morning.")

The King was not amused.

So Chrissy and I went over to HOS and met up with Carol, Karol, and Paisley! Woo Hoo! And we also met up with about seventeen-hundred other stitchers who decided to shop that day. Wow. Sure was busy in there! Methinks it had something to do with the fact that the sun was shining in Northern Indiana for the first time since August, so people were taking advantage of it.

We did our shopping and then headed out for lunch. This would have been uneventful, but for the fact that I was the lead car and decided to drive along side the highway instead of in an actual lane. I hate it when I look stupid.

Such a lovely lunch! I am continually amazed at the brilliance of stitchers and how much I love meeting and learning more about them. Unfortunately, when you get my sister and I at the same table, we tend to monopolize the conversation (we don't get out much, so when we do we have to talk like fools for a good length of time because God knows when we'll get to do it again), so I'm sorry if you girls left with headaches.

Speaking of...I found out last week that my Visa debit card had been "compromised" and was cancelled for security reasons. No problem...I have an emergency Visa that I can use in the event that there is compromising going on. Well, Saturday afternoon I found out that the emergency Visa card had ALSO been compromised. Damn, drat, and phooey. I awoke with the desire to have some body's head on a stick today, but after a few cups of damn good coffee, I decided to just let sleeping dogs....(see how I worked that theme back in here?). The bank is doing what it's supposed to be doing, and I don't need to scream at some poor teller who can't fix it anyways, so I'm staying in the Happy Chair and not worrying about it. (But I sure hope they catch the bastards that charged God knows what on my emergency Visa Saturday, and then I hope they let me smack 'em. Hard.)

Strawberry Garden continues:

I've almost completed the stems and leaves, so it will be all downhill from here. The urn has a pretty basket weave pattern that I loved doing, and I think it looks nice:Rather than continue with the Spinster Stitcher Rotation, I think I'll try to finish this one up this week. I am still enjoying it enough that I think I can do so without too much whining, so I might as well go for it.

Happy Monday! Stay warm and safe and dry!