Jul 31, 2017


Apparently, we're now starting all the things.

I decided to have a stitchy Sunday yesterday, and just as I was about to pick up the Sunflower Bellpull, something started calling to me from the cube room studio.
This is Summer at Cherry Hill by Brenda Gervais.

I purchased this quite a while ago and had never stitched it because of my linen selection.  The chart calls for 40ct Sand from Picture Thus Plus.  For some reason, I must have been feeling very very brave at the time, because the piece of linen that was cut for this was 36ct.


Despite my very best attempts with several different magnification contraptions, I just couldn't see the holes very well.  I was just starting to fret about this when I remembered that I had purchased a fat quarter of 28ct Wren, and if I could only remember where I put it...


The Wren is actually perfect for this, in my humble opinion, and looks even better with the threads than the Sand would have.

So I plopped myself into the Happy Chair and enjoyed my Play Time with this until it was time to hit the hay.

Nothing on the agenga today.  I might try a little spiffing and fluffing to occupy a minute or two, but methinks I might also take a book to the pool and float about a bit in the sunshine.  Tomorrow will be filled with labwork and doctor visits, so I might as well enjoy some peace and quiet.

At Cherry Hill!

Jul 30, 2017


In January of 1999 I moved back to Indiana from the Jersey Shore.  I had been living in New Jersey for about six years, and after finally moving to a lovely little condo on the beach, got homesick for...cornfields...apparently.

One of my favorite rituals of living in New Jersey, however, was the walk to the newsstand every Sunday morning for the Sunday edition of the New York Times.

A newsstand.

Right there in the little neighborhood...next to the place where you could get the good bagels and a great cup of coffee.

We don't have newsstands here in Hoosierville.  This was a sad fact that I discovered when I tried, that first Sunday, to find a place to buy the damn Sunday paper.

Over the course of the last almost twenty years I have done everything I can think of to continue my Sunday Times tradition.  At first, I started popping into Borders to see if they had a few copies for sale. Then, when Borders closed, I would drive from Walgreens to Walgreens, market to market, place to place to find that one little hidden gem that would set aside a copy for me on the promise that I would show up every Sunday morning with a shopping list and cheerful disposition.

Once a year I fell for the home delivery marketing voodoo magic, and I would buy a subscription at the low low price of a gazillion dollars a month (!), but in the eleven or so years that I tried this, I never once received the damn Sunday paper when or where it was supposed to be damn delivered.

But, because this is me we're talking about, and because I have a head like a rock and just can't seem to learn from my past cockeyed optimism...I caved and ordered a home delivery subscription once again for the new digs here at CS2 when I fell prey to an enticing ad on the Instagrams.

Wanna know what happened?

First...Exhibit A:
Current time is 1:13 pm EDT.

Exhibit B:
In case it's hard to discern...that would be the landing in front of my door.

Sans paper.

The worst part of this story is that when I called to report the missing delivery, the guy that answered (my new bestie, Tim) recognized my name and said "Oh, hi Miss Rich!  It's been a while since we've heard from you!  Did you get your paper OK this morning?  Looks like we delivered it to 1529 South Lake...oh, wait a minute.  That looks like it might be a bad address.  Did you, by any chance, move recently?"

So after living in my house for fifteen years and missing the Sunday Times delivery for almost every single one of them, it would appear that they finally got it right and started delivering there.

Except, of course, the fact that I no longer live there.

I'm going back to bed with high hopes that somebody somewhere will take pity on me, fix the address in the computer, put their shoes and socks on, and bring me a copy of the paper later this afternoon.

In the meantime, there are things to stitch and library books to read and chickens to grill and swimmingsuits to ponder.  I hope that your very own Sunday is exactly what you want it to be...and that your paper was dry (and delivered) your weather is lovely, and your needles are flying!

Jul 29, 2017


Miss Jane and Miss Charlene supervised a visit to the House of Stitches today.  

(There may or may not have been shenanegins.)

Miss Joy, once again, was the Fabric Whisperer and selected a simply perfect piece of Heroic linen from Picture This Plus for this little beauty:
The threads are all conversions by Yours Truly from NPI silks to Weeks Dye Works overdyed cotton. (Happy to share names if anybody is interested.)

I didn't really neeeeedddd anything, but when has neeeeeedddd ever had anything to do with it anyway?  

Speaking of neeeeedddding...one of the things that I have come to realize is that there are six things that I need to do every day if I'm going to survive this world.  I need to read, write, stitch, blog, cook, sleep, and eat.

(Breathing and water drinking are optioinal.)

(Damn good coffee, however, is medicinal.)

So...I'm heading to nap time with the latest library book:

And when I get up, I will have dinner (leftover from lunch thankyouverymuch), and I'll continue stitching:

So that's the latest from this neck of the woods.  Hope your very own Saturday is also stupendously swell!  Come tell me all about it!


Jul 28, 2017


Miss Brandi worked her magic on the unruly squirrel on top of my head, and then I got completely sassy with it and went for my very first dip in the pool.

You know what's great about a swimming pool?

When you're in it...floating about like a happy manatee, nobody can see the flop sweat you've broken out into because you're already wet!  And when your face goes beet red because you're remembering the thicket that grows on the back of your thighs that you forgot to Nair...it just looks like sunburn!

So I kept my sunglasses on and figured if nobody could see my face then they couldn't see anything else...kind of like an invisibility cloak...and I got in the water.

My God.  What bliss!

I forgot how good it feels to just move around and feel so...refreshed and relaxed all at the same time.

Methinks I have discovered a new part of my daily routine.  

Thank you for your kind words about my Sam Toft purchase.  I am thinking that this will be a good weekend to finally get these walls finished now that it's here!

Hope you are heading into a happy, blissful, stitchy, wonderful weekend!


When Miss Susan Anonymous started the YouCaring fund for me and then all of you so generously contributed to it, I promised myself that I would find a way to use the money meaningfully.

And so I secured my future a bit by reserving funds for CS2 and then, more importantly, the month long stay in Indy after transplant.  I was also able to finally pay off some nagging medical bills, and leave a little cushion for future bumps in the road (like trips to the emergency room for diverticulitis flare ups).

But I wanted to do two more things.

First, I wanted to come up with a way to properly thank everyone who donated.  I think I finally figured it out and will start getting that task completed this weekend.  I am so woefully behind on doing this, and for that I really do apologize, but I intend to start fixing that tardiness.  Right now.

The second thing I wanted to do was purchase something that would be a daily reminder that the world came to my rescue when I needed it the most.  I had decided that a new Happy Chair would be just the perfect thing, but then I dithered so much on style, color, etc, that I found myself saying "Oh, just put the old one in the apartment and figure it out later."  And then I started fretting over the expense of it, etc etc, and it took the fun out of it.

And then I found it.  And it arrived in the post today.  All the way from England.
This is Sam Toft's "It's All You Need".

It is a limited edition print and is signed by the artist.  It's mounted and ready for a frame, and I am going to hang it directly opposite me so that I can see it every minute of every day.  

This is the little house that love built, my dearies, and I promise you that I will never forget that.  In case I forgot to tell you...

Thank.  You.

From the very bottom of my very pitiful yet very full heart.  You saved me when I thought I wasn't worth saving.  As long as I live, I will never forget that.

Here's hoping that your weekend is full of...love...and all things stitchy and happy!


Jul 26, 2017


I don't think the poor UPS guy had even turned off the engine on the big brown truck before I was out of the Happy Chair like a shot and waiting for him at the door in my pajamas.

What can I say?

When I'm inside the apartment, I'm going to be prepared for snoozy naps and lounging...not formal wear and a proper set of underclothes.

So...here it is!

But wait...there's a snap tray! And a needle minder!!  I only ordered the canvas and threads and stitch guide!

Oh...there's a note from Miss Ruth.   Wonder what it says...

And this, dear friends, is when the ugly cry hit.  This entire package was a gift.

From stitchy angels.

How in the world did I get so very lucky?  I am continually overwhelmed by love and kindness and generosity.

So, dear angels...thank you from the bottom of my pitiful little heart.  You have just made this the most happy day.



I realized after I had done it that putting the date on this might not have been the brightest idea, but...who cares if it says 2017 and probably won't be done until 2140?  

What it did do, however, was get me thinking about gathering a Fall basket and getting myself back to a more "seasonal" rotation.  I have a nice long retreat at Donaldson coming up next weekend, and I'm thinking that it might be the perfect excuse to close out Summer stitching and launch myself into Fall!

Today is a prancydancing day.  I signed up for Miss Ruth's next Mystery Class (which is a fabulous blue bird!) and the UPS thingie tells me that it will be here today!  I keep running to the front door every time I hear a noise, thinking it's my delivery!  Oh, I just can't wait.

(Prancypants dance.  Prancypants dance.  Prancypants dance!)

Today is printer set up day.  My old one didn't survive the move, so I grabbed one at the Targets that is supposed to be very easy to use and will print from my iPad thingie.  Fingers crossed!

Futzingday is upon us, dearies!  Let's all do something fun and then tell each other about it!

Jul 25, 2017


I was fishing through my stash for something to play with last night, when I came upon the Sunflower Bellpull from The Drawn Thread:

I had started this piece quite some time ago...I'm sure if I looked back hard enough I could figure out the exact date, but considering the hash I had made of it, the date is best left forgotten.

That entire bottom area north of the border stitch was...screwey.  I don't know what chart I was looking at, but I had too many leaves, leaves in the wrong places, and leaves stitched in the wrong color.

So this leads me to presume that this was started when I was a newbie and still learning how to count.

Quiet couple of days...met with the kidney doc yesterday and she concurrs with family doc that surgery on the gut needs to be done asap.  They are in disagreement about which surgical team to go with, but if Buzzy's guy is willing...we're going with him.

Nothing much else to report.  I am going to behave myself and lay low today.  

What's new in your neck of the woods?

Jul 24, 2017


Stargazer by Mirabilia...it would be my first.

Jul 22, 2017


Jardin de Bobines
Jardin Prive'/Nathalie Cichon
28ct Fresco by Picture Thus Plus
DMC floss as charted, with a few substitutions

This was an absolute joy to stitch from start to finish.  The chart itself is really quite perfect in its size, clarity, and printing, and the design is a lot of fun with the whimsy and bright colors.  This is a new designer to Yours Truly, but I look forward to doing more of her pieces!

Lovely, quiet, peaceful day.  I did manage to clean up my entranceway a bit and stow extra boxes, etc in the closet.  Now it is ready for the hanging of lots and lots of stitchy things to really make it feel like home!  I also wrote a wish list for each room, as well as a project list that I hope to get back to as soon as I can.

Many of you asked me about my list of things I'd like to do after transplant.  One of the stitchy things I'd like to do is finally host that retreat I've been talking about.  Another dream is to take an across country train trip in a private compartment and stop at the Shepherd's Bush shop on the way to an Aristea retreat at Liguna Nigel.  And finally, the big dream is to go on one of the trips to Great Britain with Miss Elizabeth from Needlepoint Now.

Wonder if I could do all of those things next year?

I haven't made it down to the pool yet.  The truth of the matter is that I am feeling quite shy about being in a bathingsuit, so I am thinking that a morning dip one day this week might avoid the crowds.

Tomorrow promises to be another hot and steamy day, so my plan is to repeat today.  I might even start something new from one of the bins in the cube room, or I might dig into the WIP basket and do a little organizing.  I had an idea to put them in order according to how much is left to finish and then try to knock a few out, but I'm kind of enjoying just playing with whatever strikes my fancy, too.  

OK, off to bed.  The restaurant downstairs is hosting an Italian fretival this weekend, so the music and shenanegans might continue on a little bit longer, but I've got Flosstube to keep me from hollering at them to turn that racket off like a grumpy old lady.

More tomorrow.  Hope your Saturday was swell!


I was going to do laundry and clean the apartment today.

Naaaahhhhh.....I think I'll just stay right here, drinking my damn good, doing the puzzles, finishing my stitchy piece, and then taking a nap.

I swear, as soon as I get that new kidney and get some energy back I'm gonna' be dangerous!  I have already started a list of things to think about doing when that time comes.  Something to look forward to!

Here's hoping your very own weekend is off to a blissful start!

Jul 21, 2017


VISITING CS1: As mentioned previously on this here blog, I have been studiously avoiding going back to the house because it was resulting in meltdowns and me bawling my eyes out while pitifully pleading to nobody in particular "I just want to come home".  So today I decided to do something different.  Instead of waiting until I was getting ready to leave Chez Spinster, I walked right in, sat right down, and said "OK, Tubbykins.  If you're going to have a meltdown, do it now and get it over with.  We've got stuff to do and places to be and a nap to take."

Guess what happened then?

Zip.  Zilch.  Nada.

I tried.  I really did, but the tears just wouldn't come.  Instead, I watered the plants, grabbed a few small items, and pulled the door shut behind me.

Wonder if this means I'm turning the proverbial corner?

HAULING CRAP UP THE STAIRS:  I really need to stop complaining about it.  I rented the damn apartment with the stairs right there in front of God and everybody, so it's not like I didn't know this would be an issue.  I took this apartment because the price was right, quite frankly, and my inability to navigate those stairs is not going to last forever.  So today I went on the Amazons like you all told me to and I ordered a stair climbing cart.  Problem solved.  I will use it as long as I need to and when I feel better I'll put it in the closet or donate it.

JOANNS:  I had to stop at the JoAnns for a replacement bulb for my stitchy light, and lo and behold, they had them on sale!  I was so excited...I thought my Bargain Betty dance was going to scare the bejeebus out of everybody in the place.  I didn't really do too much looking about...today's heat and humidity already have me plum tuckered out, so I was good and got out of there for a whopping five bucks!  

OK...now it really is time for that nap.  I'll blather more later!



My brain operates on the Kelly Bundy method.  For everything new that goes in, something old has to come out.  If I'm not careful, all of this new stuff rattling around in here is going to cause me to forget my middle name and Social Security number, and nobody needs to do that more than once in their lifetime.

LAP STAND: Thank you for all the links and suggestions.  The best advice, though, was to slow my roll, since I don't know the actual logistics of dialysis yet, and whether or not I will be able to even stitch at all.  In the meantime, I have several things I can do to help Buzzy not get so sore...namely move him around a bit every now and then instead of keeping him bent up for hours at a stretch.

SEWING MACHINE:  Problem solved.  I grabbed my sisters's machine from the house and hauled it over here to CS2 and used it like a boss.  But when the time comes for my sister to ask for it back, I have several great options at the ready.

GUILT, SHAME, AND BITCHING ABOUT HOW MUCH STUFF WE'VE GOT:  Kids, can we put a moratorium on apologizing for our stuff?  I have been watching Flosstube like a crazy person and am continually amazed at the lovliness of each and every single stitcher I've ever met.  Take it from somebody who knows this first hand:  Stitchers are the nicest, most generous, least selfish, smartest, funniest, warmest, kindest people on the planet.  But we seem to be the guiltiest too, since every introduction of one's latest haul or parade of WIPs or showing of stash is precluded with a "I really shouldn't have" or "I'll never get this finished in three lifetimes" or...insert sense of guilt and shame here.  You know what?  Every single one of those purchases or acquisitions should be viewed in a positive light.  If we stop buying, shops close, designers retire, and the world tilts off its axis.  There is no such thing as having too much stash...you are simply enriching your passion and your time with something you love and that will keep you out of trouble, the depths of idleness, and pessimism.  I personally think that having several hundred things going is a sign of good luck...you need to stick around long enough to make a dent in it all while simultaneously increasing your luck by building the pile higher and higher.  Unless you and your children are starving in the street because you spent the rent money on Dinky Dyes...go for it, buy all the things, and come show them to me every chance you get.

(That entire diatribe could have been put thusly...life's too short.)

SUNSCREEN:  My old lady bathingsuit arrived from the big old lady store, so I decided that I might try a dip in the pool this weekend.  But I also figured that I might want to get some sunscreen (which is something I have never once purchased in my life), since I haven't been in the sun in about 15 years and really don't need to do anything silly like get a massive sunburn on top of everything else.  When did sunscreen get so darn complicated?!  I stood in that aisle for a good half hour trying to figure out what to get, and ended up with a 45 lotion and a 70 spray.  Good grief, Charlie Brown!  It will probably take me longer to wedge myself into the old lady bathingsuit and get the bloody sunscreen on than it will to determine that it's too hot outside and come back in, so wish me luck!

DR. MELFI SPEAKS:  I saw Dr. Melfi yesterday and confessed that I told all of you that I see her.  And she said something pretty brilliant in my opinion.  She said that the stigma of seeking help with one's mental heath is baffling to her, because she sees people who are working hard to be the best version of themselves...not people who are crazy or weak or lazy or stupid or whiny.  After all...we maintain our cars, our furnaces, our teeth, and our pedicures.  Why wouldn't we maintain our ability to navigate the world?  

(You just have to love that about her, don't you?)

WEEKEND PLANS:  I am going to try to finish Bobbin Garden and then play with whatever else strikes my fancy.  I might sit on the floor in the cube room and re-organize a few bins, or I might just pull out a WIP or two and see if I can gett jiggy with something fun.  I also want to get my groove back on with an "on deck" basket for Fall, but that might end up with an obsessive planning session or (Heaven forbid) the implementation of a rotation!  Yikes!  But first, I need to go water plants at CS1 and then think about a nap.  I didn't sleep at all last night for some reason, so my heiney is dragging.

That's the report from the steamy confines of CS2 today.  I hope you have started your weekend with a cold beverage and a hot project in hand!  Don't forget to show me all your stuff and to enjoy every bit of it!

Jul 20, 2017


I've been accused of being an enabler.

(Cue the footage of me clutching my pearls, gasping in horror, fanning myself with my program, and then giggling hysterically.)

Now it's your turn to get me down the stitchy garden path.

For several months now I have contemplated a lap stand.  My poor left arm just ain't what it used to be, and as I get closer and closer to the day when I am going to be in the dialysis chair for hours at a time, I think it's probably wise to narrow down my decision.

But what kind do I get?

My first criteria is that I have to be able to get to the back of my work quickly and easily and possibly with one hand. (My left arm will be immobile, full of needles, and hooked up to a machine.)  Ideally that means something that just holds my piece without clamps, screws, bolts, or fairy wings.

I also have the unfortunate issue of not really having a "lap" per se, and the propensity for getting a little seasick if my project isn't steady when I work on it, i.e., not loosey goosey and flopping all over the place.  This makes me think I might want a "sit on" frame, but...see question above.

Finally...the damn thing needs to be portable enough that I won't require a sherpa to get it in and out if a car, up and down stairs, or in and out of a stylishly made tote bag (that is the next thing I will have to purchase for these adventures).  I'll be toting this thing four days a week, kids.  Probably don't want one that weighs as much as me.  Or a small country.  Whichever is heavier.

So talk amongst yourselves, please, and get back to me.  If you have a magic bullet and wouldn't mind sharing a picture or where you purchased said bullet, my pitiful little heart would be most grateful and forever in your debt.  More than I am already.


Jul 19, 2017


My appointment with my family doc went as expected...surgery is imminent.

But before that can happen, there are antiobiotics to swallow, specialists to call, kidneys to plump, and one very stubborn spinster who is determinied to postpone said surgery until the apocalypse.

(Which I assume is any day now considering all of the other crap happening in my life at the moment.)

Never fear...I took the news with my usual good cheer, paid my $10 copay, got the hell out of there and went for a Berry Boost smoothie at the Smoothie King right outside my apartment.

I don't know what's in it exactly, but I feel healthier already.

Seriously, kids.  I will survive this.  I have to.  There are blog posts to post, Needlepoint Now columns to write, and enough stitching projects in my little cube room studio to keep me busy and out of trouble well into my dotage.

Besides...I promised myself that getting all of the bad stuff out of the way now means that I will be a very happy little old lady.

With a motorcycle.

And a very young boyfriend.

Named Brad.

Here's a little progress on Bobbin Garden:

As soon as I finish my smoothie, the paper, and the puzzles I think I'll get back to it.  It is a simple stitch, but very fun and turning out quite lovely, I must say.

Here's hoping your very own Futzingday is surgery and worry free.  Do something fun and come tell me all about it!

Jul 18, 2017


So I had a thought...

If God/the universe never gives us more than we can handle, then He/She/it must think I'm freaking Wonder Woman.

(I always wanted to be Wonder Woman.  I used to twirl around banging my little jelly bracelets together, but all that ever achieved was an upchuck of my baloney sandwich and oddly shaped bruises that made my mother wonder what the heck I was up to now.)

Tomorrow I am going to visit with my family doctor, who will most definitely call the entire team to rally round the conference table once again in support of the Spinster.  I am positively determined to go to transplant in the Fall, so if they tell me to stand on my head and spit wooden nickels, that's exactly what I'm going to do.

(But, in closing, can I just point out that this latest episode of unwellness is coming right on the heels of me being a model patient for the last two weeks?  I swear, as God is my witness, I'm going to get a pack of smokes, a bottle of tequilla, and a denim mini skirt and go party my heiney off like it's 1987, and we'll see if I don't feel a thousand percent better than the idiot health nut who has been drinking her filtered water, eating organic crap, and resting herself like crazy for the better part of ten years.)

Just kidding.

Besides...I don't think there's enough denim in the world to make this beefy gal a mini skirt, and even if there was...nobody needs to see that.

OK, back to stitching and drinking my filtered water.  If I get really crazy, I might even contemplate a little Jello.



Jul 17, 2017


I swear this could only happen to me.

After a lovely shower, some clean clothes, and the emptying of the dishwasher and trash, I was off to the grocery.  I chanted to myself the entire way there (which is basically across a parking lot) "Use the scooter.  Use the scooter.  Use the scooter."

I parked, grabbed my list and reusable bags, and made my way into the store.

No scooters.

Now a smart person would have turned right around and driven the four and a half seconds home (really...I'm not kidding about the distance, kids.  You can SEE the damn grocery store from my front window!), but this is me we're talking about.

So I made my way through the store and got what I needed and ended up making it home with five bags.

Five lousy bags.

I was sooooo careful to not overload myself, and on the first trip I nicely balanced a heavy bag and a light bag in my right hand and used my left to hold on to the handrail and pull myself right up the steps.

The second trip was two medium bags, and I made it up...slowly...but nevertheless got where I needed to go.

On the third trip, I only had one very light bag and a few pieces of mail that I retrieved from the box.  I was doing great...a little sweaty and winded...but I was being so very careful and taking my time when


I think I pulled a muscle.

Or several dozen muscles.

All I know is that my right calf hurts so bad that I think it's going to be a year and a half before I can walk on that leg again.

Good thing I got the darn groceries.

OK.  I'm going to go onto the Amazon to get the bloody cart thingie that you all recommended, and then I'm going to create a Match.com profile that says "Portly spinster looking for gentleman companion who will take her grocery shopping once a week and cart her bags up a flight of eighteen steps for her.  Must love needlework and oddballs who blather on endlessly about their deceased pets named Stewey. A resemblance to Jeffrey Dean Morgan is helpful but not mandatory.  Mental health professionals in need of test subjects strongly encouraged to apply."

It's not easy being me.

Tonight I am perched in the Happy Chair with ice packs and Tylenol and lots of ice water and stitching. I hope your Monday has been muscle pull free and that your needles are flying!


Man-o-manachevitz, these Mondays keep creeping up on us, don't they?

I had a lovely evening of stitching and TeeVee watching last night, and then it was off to bed with some Flosstube.  The trend there lately has been a presentation of one's WIPS, and I am enjoying it tremendously.

Isn't it fascinating how watching someone hold up a piece of cloth with stitched patterns on it can be so completely...wonderful?  I was describing Flosstube to someone once and they said "It sounds about as exciting as watching paint dry" and I knew that they were...not in our tribe...so to speak.

My left arm is a bit worse for wear since Friday.  Very bruised and sore, but still buzzing nicely, thankyouverymuch.  I am taking Tylenol and using ice packs when necessary, so I really shouldn't complain too much.  As long as I just sit quietly and not try to do too much it's just fine.

Here's the progress on Bobbin Garden:
I am really enjoying this and can't say enough about the excellent quality of the chart.  It is very clear and enlarged and beautifully printed.  

Today is grocery day.  I have my list and an armed with coopuns and a hopeful attitude.  I really don't need too many things...I am seriously back on the wagon for the rest of July and all of August.  I see the transplant surgeon again on August 31 and promised myself that I would be another 20 pounds lighter by then.

So that's the Monday report from the friendly confines of CS2, my dearies.  I hope that your very own week has started on a swell note and that wherever you are today is exactly where you want to be!

Jul 16, 2017


Today is going to have to be a quiet day.  I just can't seem to get myself bounced back from that procedure on Friday, and I think my day-long outing yesterday (while wonderful) might have been too much for Yours Truly.

So I'm in the Happy Chair with Season 6 of Game of Thrones on the TeeVee, a vat of iced tea in my sippy cup, and my new project ready to play.

This week promises to be another restful one.  Nothing planned other than labwork and a few small errands.  Could it be that I am finally learning my lesson and scaling back my lifestyle to accomodate these kidney beans giving their last gasp?

The adjustment to being so careful got easier when I looked at it as a temporary thing.  Once I get the transplant, I can go back to running around with my hair on fire.  Now, though, I need to be a patient and live with some major limitations and expectations...right?

I swear, someday somebody will be able to fix this head of mine and erase all of the guilt and shame and worry and fretting over being lazy and unproductive and selfish.  Dr. Melfi almost has me convinced that it's OK to reframe "selfish" into "healthish" but I am, apparently, a slow learner.  But I'll get there and will learn that it's OK to say "No, thank you.  I just need to stay in bed today" or ask for help when something proves to be too much physically.

To that end, I am going to ride the scooter tomorrow at the grocery store and I'm going to promise myself that the first person that looks at me sideways and makes me feel embarrased about it will get a lovely smile and a mutter of something clever under my breath.

OK, that's enough philosophizing for one Sunday afternoon.  Back to stitching!

I hope that your Sunday is swell and that whatever you're doing is exactly what you need to blow your skirt up today!  Come tell me all about it!

Jul 15, 2017


I just returned from an entire day out with my stitchy sisters to discover that my brassiere was on inside out.


This morning started at Missie Jane's church for a stitch/craft breakfast and then ended with the South Bend EGA picnic at Miss Katy's office.  I wish I could tell you that I accomplished a lot, but alas, I'm afraid that I am still a bit hungover and sore from yesterday's little Buzzy party.

I suppose that I should have stayed home, but it was so nice to be with "my lady friends" and enjoy their company.

If only I would have been smart enough to get my underclothes on properly.

So now I am headed to the big girl sleigh bed for a nap, and then methinks I will hit the Happy Chair for some real stitchy action...no bra included this time.

Happy Saturday to one and all!  Here's hoping that your everything is right side in and that your needles are flying!

Jul 14, 2017


I'm going to take a snoozy nap and start this when I wake up:

I had to do a floss toss because I am missing several of the colors and cannot drive to the Michaels to get them because of the sedation earlier.
The linen is 28 count Fresco from Picture This Plus.  I think it's going to be swell and big enough to do this on it also:

Finally, here is the view from the studio Happy Chair:

OK, enough blathering for one day!  Time to go night night and rest my weary little head.


The procedure is complete.  Buzzy did very well, but needed a little ballooning and the addition of a small coil to close off an errant branch.

It was called an accessory.

Who knew Buzzy was a diva and liked to accessorize?

The happiest surprise was...lunch!  Diet Sprite and a turkey sandwich!

OK...time to go home and rest.


Jul 13, 2017


Hard to believe I've been here a month already.  I don't know if I am happy or sad, content or fretting, energized or tired about that fact...but I'm here.

This has been the most quiet and restful week I've had in as long as I can remember.  Sleeping, eating, stitching, blogging, and reading to my heart's content.  I confess to feeling a bit jumpy initially, but today I seem to be OK with the absolute nothingness of it all.

It seems that making a promise publically really worked.  Maybe now I should make other promises to get me ship shape!

More progress on Star Spangled Banner:
This next row is very fiddly and requires a fair bit of attention.  It it a cool pulled/looped stitch surrounding a double cross.  I'm working it piece by piece and got the bottom row completed before calling it a night.  I think I might just keep going with this, since the different stitches are keeping me interested and the silk is just lovely to work with.

Tomorrow is fistulagram/angioplasty day.  Basically, the procedure is that they are going to inject my left arm with dye and take a look at Buzzy (the AV fistula that will serve as an access point for dialysis). They do this to make sure that everything is nice and open, and if there are any areas of narrowing they will insert a balloon (angioplasty) to widen the pipe.

All will be done under sedation, so I won't have to worry about a thing...I just need to remember to get up early and get my coffee and a light breakfast in me five hours before the driver arrives to pick me up.

That's the Thursday report, Dearies.  I'm going to unpack the Target boxes that arrived this morning and hit the Happy Chair to catch up on the Housewives.  Wonder what they've all been up to this week?

Jul 12, 2017


I was contemplating a Target run yesterday, but remembered my promise not to haul anything this week.  Also, the thought of carting Vitamin water and toilet paper up the stairs in 90 degree heat was not exactly...enticing.

I know, I know, I need to get over the fact that to leave or enter my apartment you need to negotiate a staircase.  I thought it would be a good source of exercise when I looked at the place, but now that I am feeling so poorly it's more of a "spinster trapped in a tower" kind of thing.

But then an amazing thing happened.  I went on the Targets website and discovered that they have a service whereby I can order all of my normal household stuff and it will be delivered to my front door mat free of charge!  The prices of the individual items are exactly what they are in the store...God knows Bargain Betty here checked that out carefully....and because I used my Target debit card the shipping was free.

So tomorrow morning the handsome UPS man will deliver my toilet paper and laundry soap and Vitamin water and Kcups and I may never have to leave here again!

And!  I just saw an ad in the South Bend Tribune for a company that is hiring...and they are a grocery delivery service!  Will miracles never cease?!

I'll get more mobile eventually, I promise.  Right now though I just don't feel well and am just being careful with how much energy I expend on a given day.  My tank is almost empty, kids, so I want to make sure that the important stuff (like stitching and reading) get priority!

Here's the update from last night.  Still really enjoying this!

On the reading front, I am back to the library books at bedtime.  What a difference getting back into routine is making!

Hope your Futzingday is swell.  I am going to finish Season 6 of Game of Thrones in anticipation of the start on Sunday, and if the mood strikes me will also do a little planning and paperwork.

Onward we go!

Jul 11, 2017


The Elkhart EGA carry-in picnic was a rousing success.  We had bar-b-que from Bill's, homeade bread, salads, pie, and ice cream cake.  Every single thing was absolutely delicious.

I know this to be true because I stuffed myself to the gills like the silly bar-b-que glutton I am.

(What can I say?  I just cannot resist brisket or potato salad in any form.)

Today has been a quiet lazy morning of paper, puzzles, and a few cups of damn good with my morning bagel.  It's going on 4pm and I am contemplating a nap with a library book or a few more episodes of Game of Thrones and some stitching.

Speaking of...here's my progress on Star Spangled Banner by Northern Expressions Needlework.  A lovely stitch, to be sure, and now that I have it properly on the q-snaps I am enjoying it much more. 

I might continue to play with this one a bit longer before switching to something new.  My WIP basket has some long-suffering undones that might like to see the light of day, so maybe I'll put together a rotation of sorts to get a few pieces completed.

Or maybe not.

I hope your Tuesday is swell.  Do something fun and come tell me all about it!

Jul 10, 2017


Just when I swore I would never look at the Facebook again...


My only thought when watching this is..."Is it possible that this incredible woman and I are even the same species?!"

Amazingly stupendously wonderfully perfect!

Thank you, Ms. Crafty Curator for the heads up that this existed in our universe.


I'm still keeping my promise and not doing a gosh darn thing, but I wanted to rip the Band-aid off and put to rest an issue that has been of concern on this here blog for a few weeks now.

But first a confession.

Despite this very public forum, and despite the fact that I am usually putting everything right out there for the world to see, I am actually a very introverted, shy, and pretty "guarded" individual.  I loathe talking about myself, or how I'm doing, or what I'm feeling, etc etc, even though this little blog of mine seems to be one continuous hurricane of every bit of crazy in this pointy little head of mine.  

(I also have a very bad habit of getting around Miss Charlene and my guild buddies and I suddenly want to tell them every single thought or feeling or experience I've had since the last moment I saw them and have a terrible propensity for blurting out the most non-relevant fact or comment right smack dab in the middle of a conversation.  It's like I'm a four year old that has been allowed at the big girl table and I have a lot to say while I drink my juice from my sippy cup and play with my toys.)

But that's another embarrasing problem for another embarrasing day.

I've always been of the opinion that a simple "Fine, thank you.  How are you?" is the appropriate response to anyone asking, but this here blog has put me in a much different head space.  (Seriously...you can ask my friends from childhood what they know about me, and they will tell you that emotional intimacy is not exactly my strong suit.  I always thought of myself as the quiet confidant...sitting in the corner nodding sympathetically while the world told me its problems.)

I suppose it's the age we're living in, but who knew I would be capable of spewing out every single thought I've ever had on a daily basis?  I'm still trying to wrap my head around this whole TMI culture of ours, yet here I am...TMI'ing my brains out day by day under the banner of stitchy blogging.

I also come from a long line of very strong, very stoic peoples who didn't talk about anything that was ailing them.  That's not to say that I was told to "Suck it up, Buttercup"... quite the opposite.  My mom and dad were very kind and loving parents who gently brushed the world away when I didn't feel good.  But we didn't use the "d" word.  Or the "c" word.  Or any "f" words much for that matter.

(The big three, kids...depression...cancer...feelings.  You know...anything remotely having to do with one's "insides".)

As with any family, I'm sure the history of mental health problems is long and varied.  And I know that my own mental health history is chock full of all of those very scary, very serious, very troublesome episodes of...taking a deep breath here...depression, anxiety, trauma, agoraphobia....all of the things that I have stuffed right down into the bag along with the physical stuff in the hopes that somebody somewhere figures out a way to fix me.

Many of you have been kind enough to write to me offering the loving suggestion that I seek help with this.  And while I've addressed it casually before...I figured I would just put it out there once and for all so that those of you who care will know that I am heeding your advice and am taking care of myself.

I see a therapist.

I take medication for depression.

Holey Schmoley.  In 51 years I never would have expected me to have the capacity to say those things out loud.  But enough is enough when it comes to me trying to pretend that all is well, tomorrow is another day, la dee da, la de dee da, ad nauseum.

The truth of the matter is that the last 15 years or so of my life have been bloody difficult.  Fortunately for me, my family doctor recognized this and sent me to a woman who specializes in treating people with serious medical challenges, and over the course of the last year she has given me some life saving tools to handle this mess of mine.

I have also been blessed with angels that watch over me and make sure I don't completely fall down the rabbit hole, and then there is this entire thing of ours that continues to awe, delight, and humble me on a daily basis.

So.  Dear friends.  Thank you thank you thank you for your loving concern about my health...physical, mental, emotional and otherwise.  I promise you that I have a wonderful team, a drawer full of meds, and the mindset that I can't do this alone.  I am being a good patient and love you very very dearly for your concern.

Now...having said all of this...we're going to resume our regularly scheduled programming of a portly spinster careening her way through this crazy world of ours, armed with nothing but her wits and needlework.  

Stay tuned...the hapless adventures of Yours Truly continue! 


I, the Spinster Stitcher Her Very Self do solemnly promise that this week will be filled with nothing but rest and stitching and reading and blogging and the making and eating of good food.

No more unpacking.  No more hauling, climbing, hammering, grunting, sweating, cursing, crying, or fretting.

At least not this week.

This week I am going to go to Elkhart EGA's carry-in picnic on Monday night, a fistulagram and possible angioplasty on Friday morning, and then stitching with Miss Jane and the South Bend EGA picnic carry-in on Saturday.

I'm going to take lots of snoozy naps with my face in the sun, read lots of library books on a lounge chair at the pool, and wander around the Michael's or the Targets if the mood strikes me for something frivilous and fancy.

There is still a very long list of stuff to do both here and at CS1, but not this week.  I am tired and just plain worn out and it's time I stop acting like a crazy person and take a breath for a minute.


I just said all of this right out loud in front of you, God, and everybody else so now I have to keep my word.  If I break it and do anything not on this list I will feel bad about it and I think I've had just about enough of that for one lifetime.

So here's to a happy, healthy, peaceful week full of fun and shenanegins.  Hope yours is much the same and that you'll have a cold one and put your feet up with me.


Jul 8, 2017


I had a lovely time with my guild buddies and then a good lunch at the Applebees.  Somewhere in there, I decided to pull my socks up and stop at the house to water the plants and grab a few items.

Like my tweezers.

And the sewing machine.

In case I forgot to tell you, going back over to the house is something that I have been studiously trying to avoid because the resulting emotional meltdown, dehydration from so much tear loss, and hangover  headache are just too much for this poor old broken down spinster to bear.

But today I decided to be a big girl and I went in, did a quick check of each room, watered the plants, grabbed the items, and got out of there with nary a sniffle.  I made mental notes of all of the work that needs to be done, lists of who I need to call to come do this or that, and plans for what might go where once I get to the point when I'm able to finally tackle getting it cleaned out and the door closed for the last time.

I got "home" to CS2, carted the crap up the steps, and was just thinking "Gee, that was very adult of me to stop and do that little chore" when the meltdown came at me fast and furious.

So I sat down with my tweezers and the sewing machine and my purse, right in the middle of the living room floor, and sobbed myself right into a full blown sniveling mess that got all over the front of my old lady big top.

I normally eat an ice cream cone after these meltdowns, but today I washed my face, put my pajamas on, and crawled into bed with Stewey's baby blanket and hiccupped myself to sleep for a four hour nap.

What we've got here, folks, is a perfect storm of physical, mental, and emotional upheaval.  And when you consider the face that I wasn't exactly smart, strong, or sane to begin with, it's no wonder we need a bigger boat.  I think my thyroid and hormone levels are all jacked up, I know my kidneys are limping, and to top it off I think I am finally moving from the vestibule to to anteroom of menopausal hell.  All I need are boils and locusts and the tableau will be complete.

The windows are open and there is a lovely breeze, and I am in the Happy Chair listening to the children in the pool below playing.  There seems to be a little girl hollering for somebody to be her champion, but the two little boys she's hollering at want to be ninja xmen super turtles or something instead.

Keep hollering, honey.  Life is one big fat quest to find yourself a champion.

TeeVee and stitching tonight and then much the same tomorrow.  If I can, I'm going to try to finish the studio, but if it doesn't get done until next week that's OK too.

Here's hoping that your weekend is turning out swell and that there are no meltdowns in sight!

Jul 7, 2017


Not sure if any of it makes sense, but a few more things here and there:
And Mom's Jasper cabinet put back together:

I'm showered and in clean pajamas, so nothing to compllain about.  I think I'll do a littke stitching and then try to get to bed with a book at a decent hour so I can get up tomorrow for Library Guild.

Hope your weekend is off to a wonderful start!


So much for plans.

I didn't get out of bed until 2:00 in the afternoon yesterday, and then I did absolutely nothing but go to the grocery store.  

Today is looking much the same, since it's 2:00 again and I am just now finishing the paper and contemplating a second cup of damn good before tackling the puzzles.

I stitched another row of the flag...this time in white silk in a lovely herringbone pattern.  I'm really enjoying this piece, so might stick with it a bit longer before thinking of something new to play with.

Still not reading...something I need to remedy toot sweet.  I have some new library books for the nightstand, but have yet to put them there.  They made it as far as the hall table.

Flosstube is still keeping me good company.  Miss Vonna...you are just what a body and soul need to feel better about the world.  Thank you for your servant's heart and for your joy.  Now if I could just adopt some of your tips and techniques...life would be grand.

And as for the rest of you...how am I ever going to figure out a way to thank you all for your good juju, kind thoughts, encouraging words, and valued treasure?  I have an idea...still percolating...but please know that I have not firgotten that I still owe so many so much.

I'm off like a herd of turtles.  Once these puzzles are done there's no telling where the day will take me.  Onward!

Jul 6, 2017


He was my baby from the moment I picked him up on July 6, 2005 until the moment I let him go on November 14, 2016.  This little creature was the best thing that ever happened to me and I miss him so much I think my heart will break.

Happy anniversary, Baby Dear.  Mommie misses you and hopes you are snoozing in a patch of sunlight with some daisies to keep you company.