Mar 31, 2016


Before I knew what hit me, Stewey and I had spent the better part of the evening happily stitching away on Tidbits.  I was worried at first that my color selection wouldn't do this justice, but a happy accident has resulted in a pretty good mix:

Today is a rather gloomy day, so methinks we will hunker down with some laundry, a few good library books, and a movie or two.  

What's new in your corner of the world?

Mar 30, 2016


Boy oh boy oh boy oh boy, am I having fun with this one!

This is Tidbits by Needle Delights Originals.  I did have all of the threads in the kit, but I was looking for something a little more Spring-like.  So a few minutes fishing through the stash drawers and viola!...Spring Tidbits!

Mar 29, 2016


Chello from the St. Joe County Public Library!

My cable and internets are down at Chez Spinster, so I put my shoes on and am writing this from the library today.  I feel so darn sophisticated...sitting here with pants on and pretending to be normal!  I wonder if the other patrons will start to worry about the portly spinster in the large print fiction section...chortling like mad and typing like a lunatic.

Hmmm....must re-think the whole idea of leaving the house without adult supervision.

Anywhoo....nothing too much to report today, kids.  I had a quiet and lovely holiday weekend.  As is evidenced by the last few posts, I finished my Needlepoint Now piece on Saturday and then spent the better part of two days and nights playing with DMC floss.  I had a big shoe box full of miscellaneous skeins and decided to get them on bobbins and into storage boxes once and for all, so I'm happy to tell you that the task is complete.

At least for now.

Yesterday, in between naps and episodes of The West Wing, I went up to the studio and kitted up a new project, but alas, I do not have photographic evidence for you today.  It's Needle Delights Originals "Tidbits" and I am doing it in some pretty spring-like colors.  I got a pretty good start on it last night, so by the time I get my act together and have a picture for you I should have some decent progress on it.

I hope that your week is off to a good start and that your needles are flying!  Stewey and I are headed to the sleigh bed for a nap today and I am determined to make a big dent in the latest John Irving that I just picked up. (I love me some John Irving and just can't wait to see what he's up to in this latest one called "Avenue of Mysteries").

Ciao for now!
Woo Hoo!

Mar 27, 2016

Mar 26, 2016


Halloween Squares (in Easter colors)
Stickideen Von Der Wiehenburg
from the Sept/Oct 2015 issue of Needlepoint Now
18ct. mono canvas in light blue
Watercolours "Painted Desert"
DMC floss 335, 351, 353, 433, 561, 677

Mar 25, 2016


I could have probably finished this last night, but it has been so much fun that I wanted to have just one more day with it.  Is that so wrong?
Stewey and I just watched the HBO documentary about Nora Ephron and we were both just knocked out by everything.  If you get the chance to see it, I thought it was lovely.

Ciao for now, bellas (and bellos)!  We'll see you on the flip side!

Mar 23, 2016


Quiet, somewhat gloomy day today and I'm doing my level best to procrastinate.  I have a very long list of important and not so important stuff to do, but I am contemplating a nap and some evening stitching instead.

I ask you...would that be so wrong?

Here's the update on my current project:

Stewey decided to get started early on the nap.  How the heck am I supposed to resist snoodling up to this little furry creature who is as soft as a bunny and smells like baby shampoo?

Mar 22, 2016


I decided I wanted to do a counted canvas piece next in the ole rotation of stitchy fun, so up to the studio I went.  I didn't have anything in mind really, but I'm just tickled pink with what I put together after only a few minutes.

The design is from Needlepoint Now Sept/Oct 2015.  It's by the same designer as the piece we did last Fall in guild...Stickideen Von Der Wienenburg.

I thought about the fun that I had with the other piece, and just as I was turning to the thread drawers to start fishing around, a skein of Caron Watercolours caught my eye.  When I was at House of Stitches last time I picked it up because I thought the colors were so pretty, and it just hollered Easter to me.  Perfect!

(The name of the color is Painted Desert, by the way.)

So I grabbed a few flosses and hit the Happy Chair and here's where things ended up before bed last night:
So far, this has been a lot of fun to play with...stay tuned for further developments!  Today is laundry day, so there's bound to be some stitching in between loads!

Mar 21, 2016


I didn't expect to stitch this so fast, but today brings us a Happy Dance FeeNee for Carolyn Manning's Sparkle:

This is stitched on 28ct. Fog cashel with DMC floss and a Crescent Colours for good measure.  The crocheted blossoms are a lovely greenie brown color and came with the chart.  In the center of each blossom is a lovely crystal bead...also part of the package you get when you purchase the design.

So now we have a wintery version of a tree with whites, creams, and icy blues and now a springy little tree with greens and whites.  I guess my next task will be to find one for Summer and Fall, no?

Doctors appointments and Aranesp injections today for the hemoglobin.  Ugh.  Good thing I'm not bothered by needles...they seem to be playing a big part in the daily life of this here spinster lately!

We're off and running for the week!  What's happening in your corner of the world today?

Mar 20, 2016


Another marathon stitching session.  Only this time it was "Sparkle" by Carolyn Manning Designs:

I think all this stitching is the result of me working out all of the inner turmoil in my tiny little brain.  I have so much stuff jumbled up in there that I think it's working its way out through my fingers each evening as I sit in the Happy Chair and watch The West Wing.  I made it through four episodes last night without realizing it, but can't remember a darn thing, so it looks like I'll have to re-watch today.  


No worries today, kids!  The sun is shining and I managed to find a clean pair of socks to keep my tootsies warm.  Stewey is lounging in the sun, the Sunday paper is almost ready for the recycling basket, and there are more adventures to be had!  On to the next!  Woo Hoo!

Mar 19, 2016


My Mo-ther can't come to the blog right now.  She's snoring away in the big girl sleigh bed after an evening of maniacal stitching and West Wing watching.  I thought we were just going to settle in for a quiet Friday night at home, but the old lady went on a tear and before I knew it, it was 4am and she was just turning out the lights.

The top part of Long Spring Panel turned out to be our very favorite, and that is really saying something since each were so lovely and fun to stitch.  I am particularly happy that Mo-ther decided to follow Miss LJP's instructions carefully on this one rather than go off the reservation, since I think the end result is really quite good:

Mo-ther selected the warm pink colorway, as opposed to the cool pink shown on the front of the chart.  The only substitution she made to the thread list was a ribbon floss in coral/pink as opposed to the called for Neon Rays.  Other than that, all threads are per the chart:

I don't know what is next on the agenda, but I am determined to wake the poor dear up in a few hours for a little sustenance and a Target trip.  She put her socks and shoes on yesterday afternoon to do so, but ended up getting woozie at the lab and had to come home.  Methinks she was just looking for sympathy and an excuse to not do the laundry, because as soon as she got a little something to eat and her afternoon dietCoke, she was right as rain and able to sustain that ridiculous marathon.

So today I will let her rest for a bit before cracking the proverbial whip.  I myself intend to lounge in front of the fire today, since it is a little nippy and overcast despite the impending Spring.

I do hope that you know I think of you all fondly and do remain your loyal and devoted friend.  Until we meet again, I wish you pleasantness and joy in all of your endeavors.

With love from your pal,

Mar 18, 2016


They say that time flies when you're having fun, but this is ridiculous.  This week has simply flown by, and it's not because I've been busy or productive or vacationing on some exotic island.  I mostly slept and ate broccoli salad this week, so I'm not exactly sure how Friday got here so darn fast!

Well, I've made it to the top of Long Spring Panel.  With a little luck and a few hours of stitching tonight, I might actually finish this one in time for the snow that's supposed to arrive over the weekend!

I have truly loved each and every stitch of this piece, but will definitely remember to use scroll rods or shorter stretcher bars on the next long panel that I do!  If memory serves me correctly, I used scroll rods on the last long LJP piece that I did and there was a lot less wrestling of equipment.

Stewey has threatened to call the authorities if I don't make a Target run today.  I am normally very diligent about keeping a well-stocked home (with bath, cleaning, and paper supplies), but I have let that slip to the point that we are down to the last drops of laundry soap and the last roll of paper towels.  Horrors!  I also noticed that Little Lord Fauntleroy's cookie closet looked a little meagre, so I suppose a trip to PetSmart will have to be added to the list also.

Damn dog.

Well, kids, the weekend is upon us.  I'm going to get these errands done and then come home and fret about the housecleaning.  I really do feel like I'm living at Grey Gardens, and the fact that Stewey has taken to wearing a little turban, a bathingsuit, and pantyhose isn't helping matters any.  Oey.

Do something fun and wonderful and then come tell me all about it!

Mar 17, 2016


Aaaahhhhhh.  A marathon stitchy session in the Happy Chair last night and all is right with the world (at least this little corner of it, anyway) once again.

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all those so inclined to celebrate it.  Happy Thursday to everybody else!

Mar 16, 2016


Have you ever had a day when you're  Everything I attempted to do yesterday was fraught with the feeling that I just wasn't quite right in the head.

(Pause for snickering.)

It would seem that all of my buttons were tuned to the wrong channel, because all I managed to accomplish was getting to and from Guild safely while wearing pants.

Not much stitching to report, since I couldn't quite find a groove and my attempt to start a little beaded Mill Hill ornament was just a hot mess despite the expert guidance and advice of Miss Charlene

Oey...bewares the Ides of March is right on the money it would seem.

Oh well, nothing catostrophic and nothing that a hot cup of coffee won't fix today.  Stewey has already assumed the position in the back window and I'm ready for a little post-Ides Happy Chair therapy!

Here's hoping that your neck of the woods is exactly as you would like it to be today!

Woo Hoo!

Mar 15, 2016


I spent the better part of three days getting ready for all of my Guild meetings, yet somehow managed to forget the chart for the project I wanted to stitch last night.


But it was still lovely to catch up with my stitchy peeps and to get inspired by their projects.

One last meeting tonight.  If I forget the chart this time I'm going to have to seriously consider hiring a new assistant. (The old one seems to be preoccupied with snoozing in the sun while issuing snarky comments about my Spring cleaning.)

Mar 14, 2016


I decided to spend a little time up in the studio yesterday afternoon.  It should have been time spent doing laundry or cleaning the house, but the last time I checked, the Queen had better things to do than come to Hoosierville to critique my homekeeping skills.

(At least that's the conversation I had with Little Mr. Fussypants this morning when he kvetched about not having a freshly laundered smoking jacket and cravat to wear after his morning bath, and that he wanted to know when I was going to learn that tea must always be served piping hot from a lovely china teacup and not, as it was, sloshed into a Clearance Bin PetSmart bowl with a "Here ya go" for good measure.)

Damn dog.

Anywhoose...progress continues on Long Spring Panel.  I am stitching this in the evenings while watching West Wing, so all I have to say about it is: Martin Sheen and Laura J. Perin for President!
(Wouldn't the world be a better place with a stitcher in the White House?)

I played with threads for this one.  If you remember, Miss Joy at House of Stitches found the perfect lilac linen for this, and I wanted the colors to do it justice.  The linen is Sprite cashel, and the colors I pulled are: Crescent Colours Purple Aster, Amethyst, and Antique Lace; Gentle Art Red Plum and Berry Cobbler; and Weeks Dye Works Taffeta and Moss.  This will probably be more of an April stitch for me,  since I am thinking about going with a purple/flowery theme for that month, but I had fun pulling the colors.

I think that this is the piece I will do once Long Spring Panel is complete.  In my head, this was originally going to be another winter tree, but upon further inspection, I realized that the little crocheted do dads that come with the chart have green in them.  They are, therefore, more bud-ish than snowflake-ish, so I am going to stick with the same brown thread for the trunk and branches that I used on the companion piece, but I'm going to switch to green as an accent color rather than the wintery blue.  
Now all I have to do is hope that Carolyn Manning will design a summer tree and then an autumn tree and my dream of having four of these will come true!

What can I say?  My dreams may be small, but they are lovely once realized.

That's it for today, kids.   I am off to the market for provisions for the week.  It's smoothies, sandwiches, and salads all the time around here, so it really shouldn't be too much of a chore.

That laundry and housecleaning, though, are another story!

Mar 13, 2016


In 1992 I worked for the American Cancer Society here in Hoosierville.  I was in charge of fundraising, and this time of the year was always Daffodil Days.

One of the events that I planned was a booth at the mall to sell the daffodils, and I was lucky enough to time it so that our booth could open right next to the Easter Bunny garden.

So I went on the TeeVee and the radio and told everybody that was watching and listening to come to the mall on such and such a day at such and such a time to buy daffodils and to see the Easter Bunny in his garden.

On the morning of the event, I got all dressed up in my very best power suit, pantyhose, and pumps, and I headed out to the mall to sell daffodils.

The damn Easter Bunny was a no show.

So I did what any sane, rational, desperate fundraiser would do.  I took off my power suit and panty hose and pumps and climbed into the Easter Bunny costume.

Once the initial claustrophobia wore off, I took stock of my surroundings and decided to just get on with it.  As long as I didn't have to walk or stand or breathe or move, the costume was actually quite charming.  The suit itself was a full-on chubby bunny wearing plaid pants and a little vest, and the head of the bunny was the approximate size of a Buick and weighed almost as much.

The mall manager helped me shuffle/clomp to the Easter Bunny Garden and promptly installed me on the Easter Bunny throne that looked suspiciously like the Santa Claus throne from just a few short months before.

"All you have to do is lift the children onto your lap and wave at the camera", the mall manager said. "Remember, the Easter Bunny doesn't talk, so just nod and wave and you'll be fine."

I broke out into a sheer panic flop sweat.  In addition to feeling like I was headed for certain death due to the claustrophobia, I now realized that I was going to have to entertain little kids?!  And I was going to have to do this without being able to scream for help?  And the lifting!  How the hell was I supposed to lift these kids onto my lap while simultaneously balancing a small vehicle on my head that threatened to fall off and maim or kill anybody who just happened to be unlucky enough to be trapped under it?

In addition to the sweat, panic, terror, and muscle spasms, I also started to itch.  Something inside the bunny suit was causing me to feel like my skin was crawling.  I figured it was either an allergic reaction to all of the polyester used to make the bunny suit, or a colony of fire ants had hatched and were now doing their thing up and down my arms and legs.

Needless to say, the parade of squirming, screaming, peeing, babbling kids that made their way through the Easter Bunny Garden that year were subjected to language that no self-respecting holiday icon should ever utter.  If their parents would have heard what was flying out of my mouth, I'm pretty sure the lawsuits, protests, and subpoenas would have made the national news.

Easter has never been the same for me since.  I can't go anywhere near the seasonal display aisle in the Targets for fear that the bunnies therein will stage an uprising and I'll be left to explain why the little children of the world will wake up on Easter morning to empty baskets and lawns full of bunny poop.

I do, however, make up for it by buying and consuming at least eighteen pounds of assorted Easter candies until I am either lying on the bathroom floor praying for death or in the dentist's office praying for Novocaine.

So, Happy Easter, kids!  I'm going to head to the big girl sleigh bed until it's over.  I figure if I stay there long enough it will be time for the stores to put the Christmas decorations out, which should be sometime in April.

Have a good Sunday!

Mar 12, 2016


Time with my Guild stitchy sisters, followed by a lovely lunch, and then (!) an impromptu road trip to House of Stitches.


I'm sorry to report that I did not put one single stitch into my project while at Guild, but I sure had fun catching up with the ladies and seeing their treasures!  I always come away from time with them amazed and inspired.

Hope your Saturday is swell!  

Time for a snoozy nap with You Know Who!

Mar 11, 2016


I'm doing it again.

Tomorrow is Guild Day, so I am prancing around the house like a little kid on Christmas Eve.  I get so excited to see my lady friends/stitchy sisters and see what they've been up to that I just can't stand it.

I'm sure it doesn't help matters that we meet at the library south of town...a place that has become my second happiest place on Earth.  (The first, of course, is my Happy Chair).

Do you suppose that this is a sign that I need to get out more, or is it really just a testament to the fabulousness that is this thing of ours and how nice it can be to sit with like-minded souls for a few hours and forget about the troubles of the day or week or month or year.

What the heck would I do without all of you?

The sun is shining brightly today, so that means Stewey is sacked out in his little bed in front of the patio wondow.  I'm heading to the laundry room to see if I can tidy up a few things before nap time.

I hope that your weekend is equally as prancie and that you can spend some time with people you love and do something wonderful!  Please come back and tell me all a out it!

Mar 9, 2016


So I sorted my Spring/Summer menu yesterday and decided on smoothies, sandwiches, and salads, with an occasional salmon on the grill.

OK, enough of that.

I've been making myself a smoothie every morning lately...a splash of OJ, some pineapple, a banana, Greek yogurt, and a couple of frozen berries to make it cold.  It's pretty much what I was having for breakfast anyway, but now I put it in a blender and drink it.  For some odd reason, it seems healthier that way.


I go through wierd ruts with my eating habits.  There are weeks on end during which I eat nothing but Egg Beaters and ramen noodles, and then it's all Taco Bell all the time.  For the most part, I think I'm pretty good, and I know that having a whacky appetite is all part of the Crohn's/kidney thing, but sheesh...why can't I just be normal?

With the warmer weather, though, I am determined to make some good stuff and stock the fridge a bit, so I am Pinteresting my little heart out.  So far I've found a lot of great recipes guessed it...smoothies, sandwiches, and salads!

I worked on the border and mid-section of Long Spring Panel last night.  I'm going to have to move the canvas on the stretcher bars today, and I'm still working out how to secure the stitched part of the canvas.  The piece is 22 inches long and 11 inches wide, but I didn't have that combination in either skinny or fat stretcher bars.  So I'm using 17's and have rolled the excess at the top.  When I move the canvas down, the area that I need to tack will be right in the middle of some stitching, so I'm fretting a bit as to how I'm going to do that.  I'm thinking that I will lay a strip of felt over the stitching to protect it....

Stewey is still snoozing away in the big girl sleigh bed.  I think he has a little cold, since his nose looks a little runny and he seems a little more sleepy than usual.  The fact that it's going to rain all day probably isn't helping matters...who would want to be up and about when there's a fresh batch of library books on the nightstand and all the tea and toast you could want on your little bed tray?

Damn dog.

I think that's about it for a Futzingday report.  After a few chores and telephone calls, I think I might join Little Mr. Fussypants for some cozytime reading!

Hope your day is exactly as you wish it to be!

Mar 8, 2016


OK, confession time.

I bawled from the minute it started until three hours after it ended.  I was a sniveling, snotty, simpering hot mess of I don't know what.  I must have needed a good cry, because I just could not get a grip and enjoy the entire loveliness of it all.

A Sopranos ending, this was not.

(I will hereby reveal that I went completely off the deep end when THAT particular show ended, too, but I was so frustrated yet amazed by its ending that I didn't have the wherewithal to bawl.)

But this time it was different and I felt like I was being gently shown to the door with a polite "Thank you for visiting"... but I still had my teacup in my hands and I wanted to spend just one more day or week or month behaving nicely and ringing for Carson.

Lovely, lovely, lovely.  Watching Downton Abbey was a good scrubby bath after all of the crazy filth that I usually watch by way of Housewives and Vanderpumps.  I always felt like it was the equivalent of a healthy sensible dinner on a Sunday after a week of greasy burgers and fries.

Well, I suppose that I had better suck it up and get on with it.  There's always Pinterest and the commemorative books and dvd's to be had, I'm sure.

No stitching last night, obviously, but Stewey has suggested that we spend some time on the back patio today.  It's warm and lovely and methinks some fresh air might do a body good!

Mar 7, 2016


I made a fair amount of progress on Long Spring Panel last night.  

I did not, however, watch the Downton finale.  I decided to save it for tonight and hope to give it my full attention.

Spring is springing today in Hoosierville, so Stewey has plopped himself in front of the patio window to start working on his tan and I'm heading to the tub to begin the annual ritual of saying goodbye to winter legs.  It's going to take a vat of Veet and a small army of landscapers, but I'm up for the challenge!

Hope your week is off to a roaring start!

Mar 6, 2016


Absolutely nothing to report today, kids.  Toast and a smoothie for breakfast, lots of bad TeeVee, and now we're going to settle in for some stitching and the finale of Downton.

I don't know if I'm ready for Downton to end, to be honest.  It has been such a lovely place to live these last few years...if only for a few weeks at a time.

Stewey is lounging in front of the fireplace for what might be the last time this season.  If I heard the weather report correctly, we're headed for Spring this week with much warmer temps.

We'll see.

Mar 5, 2016


Stewey and I have reached a compromise vis a vis the green nails.  I may keep them for March as long as I make sure my nails are not chipped or unsightly and as long as my toes match.  Also...we're doing light purple for April.

So there.

(But I will confess that every time I look at my hands I am a little jolted by the green).

(Just don't tell You Know Who).

Mar 3, 2016


Stewey and I are having a difficult time getting moving again today.  All we really want to do is stay snoodled up under the blanket and watch the TeeVee.  Would that be a bad thing?

Here's last night's progress on Long Spring Panel:

Mar 2, 2016


It's hard to tell but I did make a little bit of progress on Long Spring Panel:

Today was a crazy lazy day.  I had a dentist appointment in the morning and then came home to a long snoozy nap with my face in the sun.  Now, after a dietCoke, I'm ready ror some bad TeeVee and stitching tonight!  (I can always tackle my to do list tomorrow, right?)

Mar 1, 2016


When I hauled myself up to the studio yesterday in search of the next stitchy project, I knew I wanted counted canvas and I knew I wanted Spring.  I confess to a fair amount of trepidation, since nothing frustrates me more than having an idea in my head but no supplies to make that idea into a reality. 

What can I say?  Sometimes I just want to follow the thread list as the designer intended and not fret over having to find good substitutions.

So....what a find was to be found!  Laura J. Periin's "Long Spring Panel" was right there in my pile of charts, and then...miraculously...I had a piece of canvas long enough and THEN...oh my gosh can you believe it!?...I HAD ALL OF THE THREADS !

Holey Schmoley, I really should buy lottery tickets.

(I'm doing my version in the warm pink colorway.  Even with my craptastic photography, you can see that the chart photo is cool pink.)

Small progress, I know, but I was enraptured with all things Downton and Fashion Police last night.  I always like to watch the special "Manners" episodes of Downton so that I can keep up with Little Lord Fauntleroy and all of his crazy demands, and who doesn't love a good analysis of the Oscar gowns?

(I could, however, have done without the gutter-ness of some of the commentary though.  I like a dirty joke as much as the next guy, but some of the stuff flying out of the mouths of women (and men) these days is just...gross.  In the words of the Dowager: " Vulgarity is no substitution for wit, dear.")

OK, end of soapbox.

Today is laundry and job search day.  I'm not sure which is worse....having to fold all of Stewey's tiny little unmentionables, or trying to convince somebody that I really can not be me for a few hours every day and that I promise to wear proper footwear.

(The clothing, however, might be more pajama-esque, but stick me in a cubicle and tell everybody I'm your nutty cousin and everything will be just fine. )

If you're in our neck of the woods, I hope you stay warm and safe and dry in this crazypants weather we're having.  Do something fabulous and then tell us all about it!