Another day has dawned here in Hoosierville, and I am sitting with my damn good and my thoughts. It was a 2am-er again last night, which means I did not get up in time for the 10:00 Mass. Fortunately there is a 5:00 service at the church just down the block from me, so I can do my thing then.
Yesterday was wonderfully quiet and swell. I stitched and colored and watched movies and then the sports with JB. I didn't really have an agenda for the day, so I suppose I did a good job of doing nothing. We had BLT's for dinner and not much else, but JB was very happy with that and didn't complain one little bit.
You have to love that about him.
In the last week I've been the awed recipient of battery-operated candles and some fantastic advice about using the stockpile of Yankee candles (melt them on the stovetop to get the scent but not the soot!), so I have started to come off the ceiling over my mess. I want to thank you all for your input on the subject....it saved me!
I'll leave you with some progress pics of Plum Pudding and a couple more pages from my Angie Grace coloring book:
If I could, I would buy all of you a Bed Coffee setup so that you could have your very own Saturday abed with damn good and the paper. This silly little ritual has single-handedly changed my life, Dearies!
It's cold, gloomy, and a bit rainy/snowy here in Hoosierville today, so I will he in the Happy Chair with stitching and coloring books and a magic blanket or two. My hangover is almost gone and that means I can look forward to the next little bit of feeling like a real human for a minute before donning shoes and socks and heading to Mass in the morning.
Happy Saturday! Do something nice for yourself today. I know I tend to overdo it in this department, but I have to confess...it feels wonderful!
It all started with a text from a friend asking me to dinner, and it ended with my arrival home after a long happy visit to gifts from even more friends.
I promise you, I will never understand how I got to be so completely blessed in this department. If there was such a thing as The Worst Possible Person In The World To Be Friends With award I would win it every year. I suck at it. Always have, and probably always will. But, in an demonstration of Supreme Irony, somebody keeps putting the most amazing friends in my path. Ever.
Maybe Somebody is trying to teach me that no matter how unlovable, there are always going to be people to ignore the worst parts of you and who will put up with your foolishness and who will love you no matter what.
I. Am. Humbled.
The Cottage Care is spiffing and scrubbing as I sit here with Buzzy doing my thing. You'll be happy to know that I resisted the urge to run the vacuum this morning and dust the mini blinds before their arrival. (I know...calm down, Nutball.)
The weekend is upon us and I am going to stitch my eyeballs out or there will be a massive giving-away come Monday. I think it has been weeks since I've had any substantial time with needle and thread in hand, and that's just way too dangerous for me.
I hope that you put your lovely heads on your pillows each night knowing how much you are appreciated and loved. On the darkest days, please remember that somewhere in the world there is a portly spinster thanking God that you're you.
So here I sit on a Spinster Thursday with not one single solitary thing on a to-do list.
(Pause for reaction.)
I'm not kidding, Dearies. I don't have one single thing to do today. The laundry is done, folded, and put away (thankyouverymuch), the Cottage Care will be here tomorrow to spiff and scrub, the appointment book is stickered and written in, the dishes are home in the cabinets after sploshing, my nails have fresh coats of paint, and all of the bills and paperwork have been tended to.
I have decided to actually enjoy today and suck in the peace and quiet like a fat kid with a milkshake rather than ruin it all by fretting over the fact that I'm not fretting.
This sounds like a perfect day for a hot bath, some fresh sweats, and a marathon stitchy session in the Happy Chair!
I slept deeply and well last night, and today I'm in the big blue chair with a pretty view, so absolutely nothing to complain about.
Hoity Toity is my companion today, but I don't know if we'll get to visit or not because of some temperamental needles and Buzzy being a little pill. He's so bruised and angry that sometimes I just need to sit quietly and let him rest.
Thanks again for putting up with my foolishness. I know I'm a total nutball, but I'm well-meaning and apparently in need of a hobby besides anxiously obsessing over every damn thing. I'll get there. With pharmaceuticals, prayer, and Dr. Melfi. I'll get there.
I'm off to the You Tubes to see what everybody is up to. I hope your Wednesday is wonderfully swell and that you'll come tell me all about it!
I promise you, Dearies, that if I live to be a thousand years old, I will never figure myself out.
As you might know from reading this here blog, I have a propensity to swing between comatose and weeping, to manic and running around with my hair on fire. The is just NO IN BETWEEN with me. Never was, never shall be.
I also have the propensity to OBSESS over stuff to the point of distraction. Again, no sense of dipping my toe or taking baby steps on anything I'm worried about or need to do. It's ALL IN, Baby!
This morning started with me in the Happy Chair wringing my hands over the state of CS2, my hair situation (both thinning and facial), soot damage, a clogged drain, an out of date planner, Mount Laundry, and various and other sundry things. I wrang and wrang and wrang my hands until they were raw, but despite this, not one magic elf showed up to fix my life for me.
Damn magic elves.
So I did what an self-loathing/respecting spinster would do. I got paper and pencil and started listing all of the crap buzzing around in my tiny little brain that has been threatening to make me forget both my middle name and Social Security number.
(I operate on the Kelly Bundy method -- for every new thing that enters my brian, at least one old thing has to come out because there's just not a lot of room in there.)
The apartment situation is basically this: I would like it to be as clean and sterile as an operating room in here, but I just don't have the physical wherewithal to do this anymore. The days of being able to scrub a house from top to bottom like an Amish woman are just over for me. Period. I have tried and tried and tried to pretend like it isn't so, but the fact of the matter is that I am just not physically well enough (at this moment) to he able to clean my own house anymore.
Why this completely mortifies me is beyond comprehension, since I have, on more than one occasion, begged friends and family to hire help, since I knew they were struggling. I have absolutely zero judgement of anybody who employs a cleaning lady, but I somehow missed the part of the equation in which it's OK for ME to do so,
My first concern was the expense. I am on a ridiculously tight budget and am trying my very very best to use my resources as well as I can. I gave up the salon and other fun things in an effort to be more careful, but I think I have finally come to the conclusion that shifting some dollars to a cleaning company is not a luxury at this point...it is a necessity.
So I waived the white flag of surrender and the Cottage Care crew will be here on Friday.
This, of course, meant that I had to do something about that drain, so I high tailed it into the bathroom and fixed it. Just sat myself down on the side of the tub and got my Dollar Store gizmo out and unclogged that drain like I knew what I was doing,
Then, because I was there, I grabbed the Mr Clean and the sponges and spray bubbles and brushes and whatnot and I cleaned that damn bathroom to within an inch of its life in some kind of trance that was mixed with fury and shame that it had been allowed to get that far onto my last nerve.
From there, I sorted and started laundry and then I planted myself at the dining room table with my planner and I went to town, I glued and stickered and wrote and decorated and pasted until it was finally in order and all of my appointments and to-dos and lists and other little Post-Its were in their right place.
You would think that this would have been enough to get me calmed down, but before I knew what was really happening, the Christmas decorations were down and put away....with the exception of the three little lit trees that are going to stay right where they are with their little happy lights twinkling at me in the evenings.
Next Tuesday I'm going to get my damn hair cut and my damn face waxed and I'm going to do my level best to keep up with it because I know that if I do so it will make me feel better about myself.
The hardest part of all of this has been the conversation in my head about indulgence, being spoiled, guilt, slacking, being frivolous, etc. But I have to confess that there is a small part of me that says "Hang on just a minute. You have some majorly big stuff going on right now that you need to focus on. Going to and getting through dialysis and taking care of yourself physically should be your only priority right now. And if doing that means you need to off-load every other thing flitting about your brain, then you need to do so. You're not being lazy or selfish or stupid...you're being healthy and smart. And, when you get a new kidney and you are physically able to do so, you can go right back to being a maniac and stress over the smallest and dumbest of things. Right now...you do not have the luxury of doing that. Enough."
Isn't it a shame that the advice I would give my best friend never seems like advice I could give myself? Like I'm not worthy of the same acceptance and encouragement I would extend to a stranger? Hmmmmm. More things to ponder with Dr, Melfi.
I am now sitting in the Happy Chair feeling organized and in control and peaceful. The big hard things that were bothering me are now tamed. The soot damage will be remedied with the cleaning service and eventually by an upholstery cleaning company, and I will save up for some battery operated candles that I can enjoy them without worry. The hair situation will be fixed with Misses Brandi and Jenn and their expert skills, and I will make an effort to apply a little lipstick every now and then to remind myself that I am, in fact, a woman.
JB is ready for a bite to eat, so I suppose I should close for now. Thank you for indulging my insanity, Dearies. Please be gentle with yourself...I know I'm going to try.
After a simply wonderful weekend, the day has started with me oversleeping, bawling over soot damage, and almost driving into a pond.
(Oh, and the tub drain is clogged again because my hair is falling out by the handfuls).
(I could also tell you that after five months of not having her, my ladytime decided to make an appearance, but that would just be way too much TMI for a Monday. )
The soot damage is bad, Dearies. Bad enough that when JB and I pulled the couch out to find his phone, I discovered that the fabric is blackened quite badly. This discovery got me looking around more, and it hit me that all of my unprotected stitching is probably ruined also. The thought of how I'm going to clean all of it up overwhelms me completely.
That was the first ugly cry bawling session in the shower.
(With the damn clogged drain).
Then, in a completely unexpected surprise, I slid off the road on my way here this morning and bumped a guard rail in front of a pond. I was already going very slow because the roads are dicey out there, and I didn't hit the thing very hard, but I was shaken to my core. (We had an awful tragedy here about a mile away in which a car went into a pond and three children were killed and the mom is critical, so that was all I could think about.)
A lovely man in a truck stopped to help me and was kind enough not to slap me across the face as I blubbered and bawled (because I think he knew what I was thinking), but he skeedaddled out of there when I started blubbering about Stewey.
(His vet building is at that intersection and I think I said something about my baby dying over there and I could have died over here.)
Geeze Louise....what a morning.
I am safe and sound, Dearies, but still a weepy mess. Fortunately, my podmates and techs are used to me being dramatic, so they have all provided the necessary cooing and patting to get me off the ceiling.
(Soot damage on the ceiling.)
I need to get my headphones on and zone out with some Flosstube for a bit. I might also watch coloring or planning videos...those are swell too!
I hope your week is off to a better start than mine. We'll turn this little goat rodeo around...I promise! If I do, I'll come tell you all about it!
The metallic gel pens are a game changer, Dearies! I had a piece that I started last night but set aside because I made a mistake and put green where it didn't belong. Out came the silver sparkle and viola:
And the finished page:
Trust me. It's very sparkly.
This is a broccoli-cheddar mini quiche and fruit salad. It was my brunch and very very tasty!
And these beauties, my very dear Miss Susan, are my meatballs that turned out better than any I have ever made in my whole entire life. We ate them with homemade marinara and rigatoni:
So that's it for me, Dearies! A stupidly perfect Saturday in every way! I am off to bed now with a smile on my face, meatballs in my tummy, and peace in my heart!
I skipped my Downton Spinster Saturday abed the last week or so, but was simply determined to celebrate it today. Thanks to a lovely gift from a friend, I now have a little setup that allows for the pour of my second cup without having to haul out of the big girl sleigh bed. (Once I find a bigger tray I will be able to manage this a little better, but for now I am simply...delighted.)
(The gift was the little coffee carafe and a sugar/creamer set that I had on my amazon wishlist. It was completely unexpected, but exactly perfectly perfect in every way! Thank you again, dear friend!)
And so I am here, enjoying this ritual, some peace and quiet, and the opportunity to spend time with you and to answer emails. I want to thank all of you who shared your stitchy journal ideas and setups with me. I am simply gobsmacked by how detailed and lovely they are, but ready to get my own act together! Thank you for getting me motivated!
No stitching to report, unfortunately. I have been like a little kid the last few days, playing with a new toy. Coloring has occupied most of my Happy Chair time, but I have promised myself to limit it this weekend and pick up needle and thread first for at least 30 minutes before breaking out the markers.
My day was supposed to be filled with cleaning, cooking, un-decorating, etc (as usual), but here I sit at almost 1:00 in the afternoon looking at the Instagram, flipping through magazines, and enjoying a good old fashioned winter storm outside the window. Do you suppose that I do this to myself on purpose? Constantly set up a day of productivity so that I can just say "Nope....chuck it" and rebel by being a lump?
Something to ponder with Dr. Melfi when I see her next.
(The truth of the matter is that I am trying to be better about giving myself a break. My weeks are taking everything out of me physically, mentally, and emotionally. By the time Saturday gets here I am in need of a minute to feel like a human again and get my wits about me, so having an hour or two in bed with some damn good is exactly what I should be doing. With impunity.)
Weather is playing a factor with us here in Hoosierville, as I think it is all over the place. We got a decent snow last night and are expected to get ice later this evening, so I am praying that all will be well. If you have to be out and about in anything unpleasant today...take care, please.
Happy Saturday, Dearies! I hope that today finds you as happy and content as I am. Enjoy all the things and come tell me all about it!
Guess who couldn't sleep and stayed up until 3am with her Angie Grace coloring books?
Oh my goodness...I am just loving every moment with markers in hand, Dearies! I have decided that I am definitely an alcohol marker kind of girl....specifically Ohuhu or Milos. The cheapies that I got at the Hobby Lobby turned out to be not quite great. The brush nibs became very frayed and the pens seemed to dry out very quickly.
Lesson learned, I guess.
I did complete a very small section of Plum Pudding, but she is tucked away at the moment feeling a little camera shy, so we'll let her rest a bit. Hopefully, I will get some good stitchy time with her over the weekend, since they are predicting some bad weather to come our way and ground us all from gallivanting about the countryside.
Nothing else to report. Life is quiet, peaceful, and quite swell around these here parts, so I have absolutely nothing to complain about (even if I wanted to). What ever happened to the spinster that used to rant at the silliest thing?
Sometimes I miss her moxy and wit.
(But mostly I just miss her ability to bullhead her way through anything with grit and determination.)
Happy Friday to one and all! Come tell me what's on your agenda for the day!
I promise you that Plum Pudding is actually plum, and not the washed-out muddled blah in this craptastic photo, Dearies. Hoosierville is having a case of the Drearies lately, so getting anything in true color is a bit of a no-go.
Today promises to be quiet but hopefully productive. I have an appointment at 1:00 and then an errand or two to run, and finally, I am hoping to spend some time at the kitchen table with my planner.
On that subject...I am obsessing over stitchy journals and all things paper related. I would love to know (if you are so kindly inclined) how you keep track of your very own stitchy stuff? Do you record things in a notebook? Do you list and plan and write and organize in some kind of journal or book? If you do, will you share your routine with me? I know that this here blog has served as my stitchy journal, but I am really hankering to get back to keeping a book also.
That's it for today. I hope you get to spend some time with needle and thread (or whatever blows your skirt up) today! Come tell me all about it!
Needle and thread are back in hand, Dearies! After what feels like forever I decided to stop with my foolishness and get back into routine.
I am, however, still going to enjoy coloring:
Nothing else to report. It's a bit gloomy here at the moment, but we are promised the s-word by week's end so I am planning cozy menus and writing shopping lists like a crazy person.
Thank you for all of your excellent advice and information about the candles. I haven't decided what to do yet...whether to chuck them or continue burning and be extra careful. But you have really helped me be better informed!
Happy Wednesday Futzingday to one and all! Come tell me all about your corner of the world!
I can't seem to get out of the Happy Chair today, Dearies. It's 2:00 in the afternoon, and I am still sitting here in my pj's enjoying the Christmas lights (pause for judgement) and contemplating another cup of damn good.
Energy and motivation have escaped me, it seems, so I am wondering if it would be so wrong to just have a quiet lazy Tuesday with some stitching and coloring and some Flosstube watching on the TeeVee.
I do, however, have a question for any of you Yankee candle devotees out there: Have you had a soot problem, and if so, is there a solution for it? I recently discovered that the walls and corners of CS2 are blackened with soot that I am sure is the result of me burning candles. It's bad enough that I am going to have to figure out how to clean and re-paint before moving out, but I also have quite a few candles that I would like to continue to enjoy. I always trim the wicks and rotate so that they burn evenly, but is there something else I can do? I'm burning the large tumbler candles with two wicks, but should I switch to something different?
You all always give me such good advice that I figured somebody in the family would know what to do. If you are kind enough to reply...thank you in advance.
Well, I suppose my lazy day isn't going to start itself, so I better get on with it. I hope your very own Tuesday is perfectly swell and that you will come tell me all about it!
I'm not going to sugar cote it...Christmas Hamapalooza did a number on my progress. But, as of today I am back to my pre-holiday weight and moving forward very nicely. 110kg will behere before I know it as long as I remain...steadfast.
Hmmm. I really hate to admit it, but there really is something to be said for this whole early bird thing. I'm up again for an appointment, and find myself enjoying a quiet minute to ease into the day, rather than my normal half-awake tumble into it.
No stitchy updates, I'm afraid. I did manage a few pages of coloring, but by the time I made it to the happy chair my tiny little brain wanted something other than needle and thread. I don't feel at all bad about the coloring, though. It still engages me in a way that I think is completely satisfying, and it seems to flex different mental muscles.
So short and sweet today, Dearies. I'm off like a herd of turtles and then it's back to CS2 for a few chores and some rest.
What does your Thursday look like? Come tell me all about it!
We've got comment issues on this here blog, Dearies, and I am growing increasingly frustrated. The first problem is that I cannot reply to comments. The second is that I cannot figure out a setting that will allow you all to comment without having to go through a cumbersome security check and prevent the scammers simultaneously.
Can anybody please become the boss of me and tell me what to do?
I seem to have fallen into a rhythm of color/nap/stitch on off days and stitch/nap/color on d-chair days. So yesterday was a color day, no nap, and then a bit of stitching after dinner (oven roasted salmon and spinach thankyouverymuch).
(And maybe some mashed potatoes too. 😬)
(But only a very small portion because I'm practicing moderation and being diligent about getting to 110kg.)
Here's progress on Plum Pudding:
Pulling that silk through that fabric is just....aaaahhhhh. Exactly what a frazzled spinster needs to soothe her soul.
Well, it's time to get my headphones on and go to my happy place for a bit. I hope your very own Wednesday is wonderful and full of fun, or at the very least, that you are safe and healthy and happy today. Do something interesting and come tell me all about it!
As you know, I was the recipient of life-changing generosity from our community a few years ago. The kindness of stitchers (and non-stitchers, but somehow related to us) is amazing and constant, and a day does not go by without some form of love being shared. Our stitchy family in Australia needs everything we can provide, and there are many ways to contribute. I've been watching Miss Caroline from Off The Grid Needlearts on the Flosstube, and she has kindly provided a link to an article about how with some excellent resources. I hereby pass it along to you:
c/net article on Australian fires and how to help:
- article by Jackson Ryan
List from article on where you can best help:
Direct to firefighting efforts
The NSW Rural Fire Service has a donation page to support the firefighting efforts in New South Wales
The Country Fire Authority is the state of Victoria's rural firefighting service and you can donate directly here.
The Country Fire Service in South Australia also takes direct donations.
To help support firefighters in the state of Queensland, you can donate to the Rural Fire Brigades Association via their webpage.
Relief and support efforts
Australia's Red Cross Disaster relief and recovery fund helps support evacuation centers and recovery programs for the affected communities.
A GoFundMe page has been set up as a relief fund for First Nations communities to offer "culturally sensitive, specific direct support to some of those communities with critical costs to cover expenses."
The Victorian Bushfire Appeal is where state premier Daniel Andrews is suggesting to donate. The appeal directs money to communities in need, giving directly to those affected by the fires.
Foodbank is taking donations to help people in need during the crisis. You can donate at its website to the Victorian relief effort, which helps get relief for communities cut off from power and food.
Givit is a not-for-profit organization that cares for those in need by letting you donate goods it then passes on. It accepts items or money at its donation page.
The St Vincent de Paul society is helping people on the ground in rebuilding, providing food and clothing and emotional support. It has a donation page here.
Longer term support for communities affected by the fires will be necessary once the fires settle and that's where the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal comes in. You can donate to the FRRR here.
The Salvation Army has a disaster appeal donations page set up to deliver support to local communities affected by the blazes.
GlobalGiving has opened an Australian Wildfire Relief fund that will provide relief and support for those affected by the fires. You can donate at their website.
Direct Relief has been helping with the effort to get particulate-filtering masks across to Australia. You can donate to their efforts, which support disaster relief across the world, here.
The RSPCA bushfire appeal is used to protect the pets, livestock and wildlife affected by bushfires, helping evacuate animals from disaster zones. Items like livestock pellets and possum boxes are also incredibly handy.
The World Wildlife Fund accepts donations to help support conservation activities, particularly related to koalas. Money can help provide emergency care during bushfires.
Zoos Victoria have established a Bushfire Emergency Wildlife Fund which funds emergency vet assistance and "scientific intervention." You can donate to the fund here and it seems to accept PayPal and credit cards.
The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital has already raised in excess of $2 million to help search for and protect the koalas in the region. You can donate at its GoFundMe page.
The Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park was hit hard by the fires in South Australia. It's asking for donations to help with vet costs, koala milk and extra enclosures on its GoFundMe page.
Wires is an Australia wildlife rescue organization with a myriad ways to help Australia's native fauna. Donations can be made through its website.
The Animal Rescue Collective is another organization providing support for wildlife. Lots of information and how to donate on their Facebook page
Well here we are at the crack of dawn, Dearies. I don't think I've seen this side of the clock in quite some time, but there's something about it that is very peaceful. I know quite a few of you get up at these hours for some good stitchy/devotional/exercise/coffee time, but the truth is that I finished sleeping earlier than usual and decided to get up and see what all the fuss was about.
A doctor's appointment and laundry are the only two things on my agenda, but I am determined to stitch most, if not all, of the day away. I only managed two or three stitches into Plum Pudding yesterday, but it was enough to make me want more.
Yesterday was very quiet, but full of fun. First...a little progress on Hoity Toity:
And some coloring:
This is the book from whence it came:
Today promises more of the same. I slept in, so that means Mass at 5pm, which I am actually happy with. I'm just grateful that the parish close to CS2 offers this as an option.
This week will get us back to a normal routine and the end of all of the holiday shenanigans. I thought of a dis-mantle of the decorations today, but think I might leave everything in place just one more week. Oh, how I love them so!
Happy Sunday, Dearies! Do something fun an come tell me all about it!
Here we are on the first Saturday of the New Year! I am up and about and after a few cups of damn good will get on with my day. How about you?
Later that day...
JB is watching the sports, and I am happily stitching away with headphones on watching Miss Danielle/Stitcherista on the You Tubes work her magic. He's enjoying chili and biscuits for dinner, but I am having a cup of damn good because I blew all of my calories for the day on a sandwich at lunch time.
I might color this evening, since I scored a new set of brush markers from the Hobby Lobby for a great price (($10 for a set of 36), and although they are watercolor and not alcohol, I am enjoying them immensely:
Well, that's it for me, Dearies! I hope your Saturday was full of fun. Come tell me all about it!