Oct 31, 2020


I finished the next section of Pretty Pumpkins and moved the q-snaps! Here is a pic of the progress so far:

I found this really great map of downtown Indy and the Canal District, so now I know there are TWO Starbucks within walking distance of both the hospital and hotel! I'll be staying at The Residence Inn on the canal, so there will be an absolute ton of stuff nearby in case my visitors get twitchy.

Now for the fun. I took a look at my clothes. As long as it's cold, I'm in good shape. Everything is very soft, very warm, and very cozy. 

 I have pajama sets, lounge sets, clinic outfits, walking clothes, and a swimming suit. Everything is mix and match, and I will be able to do laundry while there, so I honestly think this is a good selection.

(The lounge sets are from Costco and have tops as soft as Stewey. I have no idea what fabric they're made of, but it took every ounce of will power I have not to cuddle up with them and take a snoozy nap right there in the middle of that pile on the big girl sleigh bed.)

No walking for me today. It's spitting snow, very windy, and about 25 degrees out there in Hoosierville today. I will, however, be having only my vegetable soup today, so that should make up for the calorie burning.)

I'm off to the laundry room, Dearies!

I hope you've had a good weekend and are enjoying a peaceful, restful Sunday! Come tell me all about it!




In what has become an annual tradition, I give you memories from Halloweens past:

 Mo-ther: Stewey, have you decided what you would like to be for Halloween?

Stewey: Yes, I want to be Super Girl.

Mo-ther: Super Girl?  Why not something fun like a zombie or a ghost or a vampire? (She frantically tries to remember what other costumes are stashed away in the carefully labeled bin in the guest room closet). Oh!  I know!  How about a lady bug!  You always wanted to be a lady bug!

Stewey:  Lady bugs are sooooo 2012, Mo-ther.  I want to be Super Girl.

Mo-ther carefully ponders just what will be involved in assembling a Super Girl outfit, and whether or not her limited skills will result in a successful outcome, or an unfortunate mess that will cause yet another epic tantrum.

Mo-ther:  OK.  Super Girl it is, but on one condition.  Under no circumstances are you to wear your wiglet.

Stewey:  The only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize, Mo-ther.  Now pass me my tights and cape.

Oct 30, 2020




I finished treatment, went to the powder room, and then almost bled to death because Buzzy decided to spring forth like a water wiggle.

Damn Buzzy.

(I suspect that he was channeling his inner Stewey and just wanted to mark his territory.)

The t-shirt, I'm afraid, is a goner, but are you ready for the good news?

113 today Dearies!

Woohoohoo! Only one more kilo/two point two little pounds to go!!

So...vegetable soup it will be and lots and lots of steps and happy thoughts it will be for the foreseeable future!


Hello, Dearies on a cold and cloudy Friday here in Hoosierville!

Nothing new to report. Buzzy and I are here in the d-chair doing our thing and trying to behave ourselves. If all goes according to plan I will come off treatment at 113.6kg...down considerably and closer to that 112kg goal!

I am attributing this to both the fasting and the vegetable soup, so I will make another pot of it tomorrow morning. Iced lemon water is also on the menu, and thanks to the Costco, I have a big bowl of them on the counter ready to go!

I finally got my favorite Sam Toft print up on the wall:

I think the clock looks a little goofy that low, so I might move it to the upper right. What do you think?

We're watching The Avenger movies in chronological order, and watched Captains America and Marvel. Well, JB Magoo watched them, and I listened to them as I stitched with my glasses off, but you get the idea.

I might switch to Hoity Toity this weekend, or I might not. I'm still loving those Pretty Pumpkins and might just keep going a bit longer.

The weekend is upon us! I hope yours blows your skirt up! Come tell me all about it!


Oct 28, 2020


This tote is what I am calling my comfort bag. It will basically takes the place of a purse/handbag, since it will contain everything I would want with me if I were stranded on a dessert island or in the hospital getting a new kidney: wallet, iPad, phone, and chargers, book, stitchy project, coloring book and markers, a sherpa wrap with pockets, fuzzy socks, hair ties and a headband, a comb, face wipes, moisturizer, lip balm, eye drops, hand cream, antibacterial wipes, tweezers, nail file, cuticle nippers, safety pins, bandaids, day planner, sippy cup, pen, notepad, tissues, lens cloth and cleaner, extra eyeglasses, power bar/Bel Vita, cough drops, breath mints, anti-nasuea meds, Tylenol, toothbrush/toothpaste, mascara, lipstick, magazines, an extra pair of underpants...and Stewey.

(All contained in perfectly sized leopard print cosmetic bags and organizers that should be here tomorrow from the amazons and cost less than my shoes from Target that were eight dollars.)

Too much?

Keep in mind that my little suitcase for the hospital will have pajamas, slippers, a set of clothes to go "home", and a toiletry bag with all of the above (minus Stewey) and little shampoo, soap, etc. so the comfort bag is essentially a back up.

I promised myself that I would just CHILL the heck out already and focus on one thing at a time, but my propensity for making things difficult has kicked into overdrive. That's OK, though. Dr Melfi tells me that this obsessive list-writing and planning and planning and list-writing is my way of feeling in control of something that is majorly OUT of my control, and if I need to do it to have a calm and peaceful transplant, then obsess about it I shall.

Besides...I'm never better than when I am compulsively organizing things into bags, boxes, and containers, so who cares if I've gone completely 'round the bend, right?

I've been keenly aware of this happy little quirk of mine most recently by achieving stitchy Nirvana. Figuring out the exact contents of a "kit" has helped me enjoy the actual stitching so much more, that I'm sad I didn't figure it out sooner. My kit contents might change somewhere down the line, but for now, the peace if mind it's providing convinces me that having a kidney transplant "kit" is a good thing.

(I just happen to have five of them.)

So, Dearies. Thank you from the bottom of my pitiful little heart. First and foremost to Miss Susan heading up the YouCaring fund and for all of your overwhelming generosity in contributing to it. I simply cannot imagine the stress I would feel if you hadn't taken that off my plate. Knowing that I can afford the post-surgery meds and the hotel and meals, etc during recovery has literally saved my life. Thank you. A thousand thank yous.

And...thank you for indulging my crazy and for coming on this journey with me. I have absolutely no earthly idea where we're going or when we're going to get there, but boy are we gonna have fun when we do!!

Time for soup, I think. I dud well during treatment today, but haven't had anything to eat yet (and it's five o'clock!) and I'm feeling a little...peckish.

Love love love, kisses kisses kisses, and hugs hugs hugs (all socially distanced, of course). Do something crazy and come tell me all about it! 

Oct 27, 2020


Sorry, Dearies.

I make up terms and throw them around and forget that anybody actually reads my drivel. A thread board is a thingie that holds your working threads. I wish I could take credit for this, but a stitchy sister posted hers on the Instagrams and was kind enough to point me in the direction of The Fat Quarter Shop. Quilters use these to lay out blocks and keep them from sliding all over the place during their planning.

My board is basically a piece of 11x14 foam core from the amazons covered in a piece of felt (also from the amazons), edged in grosgrain ribbon (yup...from the amazons). Lori Holt has EXCELLENT videos on the YouTube that walks you through making these professionally. (Mine are very slapdash, to be sure).

As I'm stitching, I pull a long length of thread from my skein, strip the number of ply that I need (in this case, one, since I am doubling over and using the loop start method), then I wrap the leftover around my fingers to make a circle and then pat it onto the board.

Since I'm using DMC here, I have a pack of the numbered stickers nearby that I use to identify the threads. You could probably use any little piece if paper to do this, and could write the symbol from the chart to make it even easier, but this works for me.

I also purchased 12x16 mesh zipper bags from the amazon to store a working board, since stuffing it into a project bag doesn't work. Here is my board for Eliana:

The second thing I wanted to tell you about is my new tracking gizmo:

The most delightful thing about him is that when I wake up in the middle of the night (which I do frequently), I now know what time it is. I normally have to guess or fetch my glasses and put my face an inch and a half from the clock radio.

Later tonight I'll sit down with the booklet and my phone and learn more about it, but for now it is a really good reminder to get up and move my heiney.

OK. Last thing. I made my vegetable soup and think I just might be a genius based on how good it looks and smells:

Here's how I made it:

Sautee celery, carrots, onion, garlic, cabbage, and mushrooms (all chopped) in olive oil until tender. Add a dash of Lawry's seasoned salt, parsley, and....here's the genius part...three packets of no sodium chicken bouillon. Then, a can of seasoned diced tomatoes, frozen corn, frozen peas, and enough water to make soup consistency and you're good to go!

I bought the bouillon packets to use with ramen noodles/cup o soup. I love those for convenience and a quick cheap meal, but the sodium in them is a little nuts. I think they make other flavors....the brand I had was Wylers.

So that's my Tuesday thus far! My new underpants and toothbrushes arrived, so now all I'm waiting for is some pajamas and a new pair of slippers and some socks, and I can start to physically pack. I've got it down cold: LARGE = clothes and shoes; MED = stitching, books, coloring supplies, and coffee; SMALL = hospital (pjs, sm toiletries, meds); CARRYON = toiletries and nail stuff; TOTE = Stewey, wallet, book, stitching, iPad, phone, chargers, lip balm. The large, medium, and carryon will all go in the car now and when I get the call I will grab the hospital bag and the tote and I should be all set.


I have spent ALOT of time thinking about this. If you are a mom, I might refer you to the fact that you probably did the same thing when you were expecting. 

And also yes...I am definitely thinking about writing a book called "What To Expect When You're Expecting A Kidney" because nobody should have to try to figure this out for themselves with menopause brain and a tendency to fret.


Figure out how to make vegetable soup without tomato juice (too much potassium) or chicken broth (the Martins is out if stock).

Check and double check checklists.




Oct 26, 2020


Good morning, Dearies!

Well, here we are in the d-chair, doing our thing. It's a bit cold and gloomy out there in Hoosierville today, so I'm hoping for a nice long nap.

(It makes the time go so much faster!)

Very quiet evening last night. Soup and sandwich from Panera for dinner, and I am happy to report that I ordered carefully and stayed within my calorie count for the day! I'm tracking everything carefully on my phone thingie, and I have to say...it really does help.

My JB Magoo bought me a fitness tracker thingie (and got himself one too), so as soon as I get home and charge it up and put it on I'll have something else to obsess about other than the impending delivery of new underpants for IU.

(There might be some new slippers and pajamas coming, but one does want to look presentable in recovery, doesn't one?)

OK, Betty. I hear you. Back to stitching.

I am still playing with Pretty Pumpkins and loving every stitch! I swear, once I figured out how to use the thread board my life changed! Not knowing what to do with my working threads once they were off the skein drove me so nuts, but now I feel like I've unlocked the secrets of the universe.

Funny, isn't it? It only look me several years to figure out my groove. I look back at early entries on this here blog, and I am stunned at how completely spastic and crazy my head used to be with trying to figure it out. I was so worried about what everybody else was doing and how they were doing it that I completely lost sight of what worked for me!

So here I sit, a one at a time stitcher who finally figured out that she needs a kit of things assembled to get the voices in her head to quiet down so she can just...stitch. No more running around like a 300 pound hummingbird flitting from thing to thing looking for perfection.

(But I still desperately want to sit at the cool kids' table, or in this case anywhere my guild ladies or any of you are gathered! I'll be good, I promise I will. I'll just sit quietly in the corner and watch your every move!)

Speaking of guild...I miss them so much! I assume that the virus restrictions have changed them, but JB pointed out to me the other day that he misses seeing me that happy. The good news (at least for me anyway) is that a new kidney will mean being able to go back to them. And! I have made a vow that once I am able to do so, I am going to attend every single class, seminar, meeting, and gathering related to this thing of ours out there!

In other words...gird your loins, Ladies!

Well, time to get on with it, I suppose. My blanket is doing it's thing and I'm feeling sleepy. Happy Monday! It's going to be a great week! Come tell me all about it!

Oct 25, 2020


Yesterday was an exercise in frenetic running to and fro, fro and to (all here inside CS2)..putzing and futzing and stressing and planning and doing laundry and writing lists and checking and double checking and...

By the time I put my head on my pillow I was literally vibrating and talking to myself.

So today will be a rest/no stress day. After breakfast (yogurt and fruit thankyouverymuch) and a few minor chores (roasting the long hot peppers JB carried back from NJ) and a long hot shower, I will return to Pretty Pumpkins.

I've started the pumpkin on the right:

I did gather my stitching for Indy...Hoity Toity, Eliana, Baked Alaska...and a small bag with extra needles and scissors,etc. Funny how that was the first thing I packed, no?

Happy Sunday, Dearies!

Oct 24, 2020



You all know that I love my JB Magoo, but sometimes a spinster just needs a minute with her needle and thread. I finally got the bright idea to present the Big Ass Plate O' Snacks early, so I can get myself situated in the Happy Chair.

(The equivalent of giving a baby a pacifier, I suppose.)

(Except my JB Magoo isn't a baby at all, actually. He's a lovely grown man who does nice things for me like get new tires on the car and who comes to fetch me from the d-chair when I'm too woozy to drive.)

Yesterday was such a day, and I finally realized that I am not going to be able to pull nine pounds of fluid off without severe consequences. First camp the cramping in my abdomen, legs, and left arm (and no, there is no worse pain), and then the cold sweat, being pulled backwards through a tunnel feeling before losing consciousness.

The good news is that my tech Lori is completely non-plussed by all of this, and she usually comes to my chair, flips me onto my head, and administers saline until I come back. Every time this happens and I open my eyes I see Lori looking at me and shaking her head before saying "Calm down, Heiffer. I've got you."

Or words to that effect.

Seriously, all is well. I have made the mental adjustment to accept the fact that getting to 112kg is going to take me more than ten minutes, and I am just staying the course and being super super aware.

I missed my Spinster Saturday Abed, but I did manage to take a cup of damn good in there and have a nice long two hour conversation on the phone with my sister instead. I think it's been five years since we've done that...talked that long. We text each morning and keep each other updated on stitchy things or recipes, or other minor subjects, but it's not the same as having a real conversation.

Transplant prep is coming along nicely. I have the luggage out and designated for hospital, hotel, toiletries, and comfort (*) and will physically pack them in the next few days. The biggest thing was to sit down and write checklists for each, so when the time comes I can rest assured that I've got everything.

(*) My comfort bag will have a book, a stitching project, Stewey, a fuzzy blanket, and all of the stupid little things in the basket next to my Happy Chair like lip balm, eye drops, a nippy thingie for hangnails, pens, mints, handcream....all of the crap that you never think about needing until you do.


Back to chilling with some stitching, Dearies. Are you doing the same today? Come tell me all about it!

Oct 23, 2020


Well, here we are...back doing our thing in the d-chair. I've got the blue chair today, so I am very comfy and happy. Everybody here hates the blue chair, but I think it's roomier and squishier, thus keeping my heiney from getting too numb.



So now I find myself in a very weird mental state of organizing and planning and planning and organizing, but I have no earthly idea for what or for when. My tech, Marcella said to me this morning as she was hooking me up that it's exactly like being pregnant and getting ready for when the baby comes.

(Yes, but in this case I don't know if the baby coming will be a hippopotamus or a desk chair, and instead of needing a mother-in-law to stash meatloaf meals in the freezer, I have to coordinate an entire team of people to do things like put my socks on, update this here blog, and make sure my JB hasn't stressed himself into a third heart attack.)

Dr Melfi and I had an emergency session yesterday, and she convinced me that the best thing I can do is off-load all of this crazy ram from my tiny little brain and just concentrate on...me. She calls it being "healthfish" instead of "selfish". 

Of course, my one and only focus needs to be getting this weight off. I confess that I was totally disappointed that after three days of fasting I weighed in at 116kg today, and I had a good ugly weepy cry about in behind my mask, but I'm not giving up. Never, never, never give up, said Mr Churchill, so push on I shall.

Enough of that.

On the stitchy front, I have managed to put exactly ZERO stitches into anything for two days now. I will definitely remedy that tonight (hopefully), and all day tomorrow when we get home from Pickleball.

(Yup. If it's not raining, snowing, or sleeting tomorrow, JB and I are going to play a little p-ball at the park down the street. I've played it a few times before and really liked it, and Heaven knows anything I can do to move my big fat self around a little bit will be good for me.)

So that's the report for a Fall Friday here in Hoosierville, Dearies. I promise not to bore you with all of my nonsense too much longer...I really don't need Betty rearing her ugly head and complaining that this is supposed to be a stitching blog and nobody cares about my stupid boyfriend, my dead dog, or how I feel about anything at all. 

(Why, though, she continues to come here when I clearly irritate her so much is beyond me, but potATo/potAHto I guess.)

You know the drill...do something fun and come tell me all about it!

Oct 22, 2020



(This is a copy of an email that I just sent...)

Dear Friends,

I'm just getting ready to write all of this in a blog post, but it occurs to me that not everybody on the planet reads my blog, and the last thing I need is to be offending my family by sharing news with millions of my imaginary friends and not updating those closest to me.

(They told me the hardest thing about being a transplant patient was keeping your loved ones up to date, and boy, they weren't kidding.)

If you're on this list and don't want to be, let me know. If you know somebody who wants to be on it and isn't, let me know. 

On Tuesday night at 10:20 I got THE CALL from IU (Indiana University Transplant Unit) that they had a kidney for me. It was from a deceased donor who had been treated and cured of hepatitis, so they were calling to confirm that I still wanted it. 



So the coordinator starts going through the checklist while I bawled and hyperventilated and snotted all over the front of my t-shirt and Rich had a panic attack trying to find his shoes, and then she asked me how much I weighed. I told her my after-treatment weight, she texted the surgeon (Dr Goggins) and said "He said OK" and I think I blacked out.

And then...

There was a long silence, and the coordinator said "Oh my God, Coni. I am so sorry, but Dr Goggins said you are four kilos over your goal weight, so the answer is no."

(Pause for you to go back and re-read that because you just went WHAT?! in your head and figured you misunderstood it).


Too fat for transplant.

(But, as you are all aware....I'm too damn fat for ANYTHING, and always have been.)

So cutting to the chase...the GOOD news is that I am now at the very tippy top of kidney list for TypeB kidneys at IU. This means that the call will be coming sooner rather than later. What's sooner? Well, we're talking days, weeks, and months now instead of years. This week, they implanted two people from the TypeB list. Although rare...now that I am #1, if a good one comes in that matches me in terms of antibodies, etc. I'm good to go.

(My weight, by the way, was one kilo away from goal coming off treatment yesterday, and it will be at or below goal tomorrow due to some heavy duty fasting on my part.)

(I might drop dead from hunger and de-hydration, but I'll be damned it will be at goal weight.)

(Seriously...the dietician and team here are on it with me to make sure I don't do anything stupid, so don't worry.)

(But send cheesecake and a steak the size of my head when this is done, OK?)

The BAD was the feeling of humiliation and shame and guilt and embarrassment that I was hit with knowing I had completely blown it. Every doctor, nurse, tech, and specialist reassures me that I have been and am doing everything I can, but still...I just want to crawl back under my rock and wear the hair shirt a few more days.

The UGLY, is that I am now sitting here packing my go-bag, making my checklists, looking around the apartment for stuff I will need to live in Indianapolis for 30 days and am...how do I put this delicately...waiting for somebody to die.

This is a psychological struggle that no amount of Dr Melfi's will ever be able to get out of my head, so I will ask you all this favor:

Will you say a prayer, please?

Not for me. I'll be just fine as soon as I get the next call and get gas in the car and then stop at the Grotto. The BVM will have me covered, I'm sure of it.

Please pray for the person who dies. Please pray that they are at peace and that their family will find comfort in their grief and that I will be worthy of living up to their memory.


That's the update. 

I am going to use my blog as the way to keep everybody updated unless IU hooks me up with something different. The web address for it is: www.spinsterstitcher.blogspot.com

I love you. I miss you. And, when this mish-i-goss is all over we might have to have a party. Please take care, be well, and know that I am sending you my love and kisses!


Sent from AOL Mobile 

Oct 21, 2020


 Hi, Dearies.

I'm using this post as a page marker for myself, because I want to remember to come back and tell you a funny story.

In the meantime, I might be away a few days because...in the words of NY152/Joe Fox...I have a little project that needs tweaking.

Talk amongst yourselves, please, and come tell me all about it!

Oct 20, 2020



NOTE: Sorry for the mess of typos below, but I was typing this on the itty bitty teeny weeny little keyboard on my phone...

Hi, Dearies.

Well, I'm at good old St Joe this morning repeating the cardiac scan.

Damn, drat, and phooey.

I don't think there's anything wrong, per se. I think they just want another picture of my big fat heart to make sure it's still tick-tocking away. Steve has alreadt given me the dose of goofy juice...now I just need to sit here for 30 minutes while it makes its way through my system.

Wonder if I'll glow in the dark tonight?

No stitching last night. I came home from treatment and crashed pretty hard in the Happy Chair. I think there might have been dinner in there somewhere, but I don't remember.

My plan for the remainder of the day is quite simple actually...laundry, clean up the dining room table, and stitch.

And maybe another dinner in there.

Magoo has a cold, I think, so no birthday shenanagins this year. The pics of him were from last year's golfing/movie/Bruce Springsteen shenanagins. This year was a bit of a bust. Saturday I hope to make up for it by making him Ina's homemade sticky buns.

I am firmly back on the diet wagon since my visit down to Indianapolis for a meeting with Dr Goggins has been postponed until Nov 24. I need to lose 35.2 pounds before then.


End of story.

Put the bowl of honey mustard snack mix down.

I'm so dang tired of fiddle-futzing around with this, Dearies! It seems like I was doing great and losing losing losing and the KABAM! Twenty pounds came back in the blink of an eye and no mattet what I do I am stuck.

I know that everybody and their brother is blaming the virus and stress and menopause, etc...but if I'm really honest with myself I know it's because I have been shoving crap imto my face with impunity and not. paying. attention.

Well, enough of that.

Back to Operation Go. (What is this? The seventh or eighth re-start?) I came off thr scale yesterday at 116kg. The goal is to be less than that coming off tomorrow and every treatment thereafter.

OK..that concludes this episode of Crackpot Spinster Weight Loss Theater. 

Happy Tuesday to one and all! Do something fun (or eat something decadent) and come tell me all about it!

Oct 19, 2020


 Happy Birthday to my JB Magoo. 

And if you would, please say a little prayer for my puppy tot baby nephew, Bosco. He is having dental surgery today.

Happy Monday, Dearies!

Oct 18, 2020



 So this popped up on the Instagrams, and I thought to myself...

"They finally made a chair that is perfect for us! I bet a stitcher created this, and I bet that there is a tabletop you can buy for the top of that stash compartment so you have your stitchy table right there next to you."

And then I read that this is a rocking chair for a nursery, and the compartment attached is not, in fact, for wips, but is a bassinette.


But stay tuned. A stitchy chair with a side car just might be the next thing to appear in the Spinster Stitcher Kidney Fund Shoppe.

Oct 16, 2020


Post-testing recovery in the Happy Chair. A new coat of polish on the meathooks, You've Got Mail on the TeeVee, and Pretty Pumpkins to keep me occupied:

Pretty good progress, if I do say so myself:


As soon as I blow this popsicle stand and get my treat from the Starbucks, I'm going to resume the position and stay there for the weekend!

What's on your agendas, Dearies? Come tell me all about it!

Oct 15, 2020


 Hello, Dearies.

Today was the day to go to the hospital for all of my cardiac testing for transplant. I have to do this every year, and every year I work myself up into quite the hot mess beforehand, because I know what's coming.

Have you ever had a chemical stress test/Lexiscan? Instead of running on a treadmill, you sit in a chair all hooked up to the machine, and they inject a vaso-dilator into you that makes you think you're dying, having a heart attack, stroke, and going to throw up all over your old lady sweatshirt until they give you an antidote.

Fun stuff,

Then...after they give you a Rice Krispy treat and a diet Sprite (as if THAT'S going to make it all better), they make you sit in a waiting room full of sick people before hauling you across the haul and then stuffing you into a scanner that very closely resembles a weapon of mass destruction....but is not.

And then the nuclear scientist named Steve starts hitting buttons and cranks and levers and whatnot and you suddenly find yourself strapped to a table with your arms above your head, Katy Perry singing in your ear, and pitiful hot salty panic attack tears rolling out of your eyeballs and into your ears.

But it's done, and I don't need to worry about it until next year...and never again if I find my kidney. And...knowing that all is well with my heart and lungs is definitely worth a few moments of discomfort, so I'm going to shut up now and get back to my damn good and some stitching.

What are you doing today?

Oct 13, 2020


Oh, Dearies...I am so excited! Tonight I will start my very first Fall/Winter Spinster Evening Ritual...after dinner is cooked, enjoyed, and cleaned up, I will go to into the bathroom and wash my face and brush my teeth and put all of my various lotions and potions on and I will then don my new SNOOPY ROBE for the evening's stitching and TeeVee watching before I hit the big girl sleigh bed.

A Snoopy robe! That's big enough to fit me! And that is as soft and velvety cozy as Stewey!

(I swear...it's the stupidest things that make me the stupidest happy sometimes.)

The face doctor was very pleased with my progress. I had an awful terrible ugly painful mean-looking rash on my chin and around my nose, and wearing a mask wasn't helping matters, but a month of antibiotics and some magic ointment, and I'm good as new! 

My dentist appointment was nothing spectacular...just a six month check up and paperwork signing for transplant.

(Yes. I need to be checked out stem to stern every year and document it with IU so that they know all of my parts are in good working order before they pop a new kidney in there. In addition to being required...it's just something I have always tried to do.)

(Kind of like maintaining your car.)

(Besides...who doesn't love to get their oil changed and tires rotated every now and then?)

Speaking of...Puff got new shoes yesterday, and they make her run faster and smoother. Apparently, the driver's side rear tire was bad and needed to be replaced. I originally thought that snow tires would be best, but the nice tire man explained that all-weather tires would be better in the long run, so all-weather tires it was.

Now if we can just find me a nice set of something to keep ME upright on ice and snow we'll be all set!

OK. Time to enjoy another gorgeous Fall afternoon with some stitching! I can't wait to get into that robe, though!

Come tell me what's got your heart aflutter today!

Oct 11, 2020


I added a Sam Toft called "Flying Free" next to my little Stewey area. I know I say this about every single Sam Toft print I have, but I think this is my favorite:

 Yesterday, JB and I had a wonderful day on Fish Lake with our friends Cheryl and Mike. We took a long, lovely boat ride and I soaked in the Fall colors from the water, which was breathtaking. Then, we had Mike's special sloppy joes (one of my very favorite things on the planet) and watched the first half of the Notre Dame game with two little Boston terriers, Gizmo and Quigley, snuggled next to us.


Today, after menu-planning and grocery delivery, I re-organized the pantry/tiny little stupid cabinet that I can't fit anything into logically:

Unfortunately, there just isn't enough room for our snacks. Can somebody please tell me who in the world needs this many snacks?!

And finally, here is the current status of my Pretty Pumpkins:

I'm very sad to tell you that my god daughter didn't get married this weekend. Her fiancé's mom passed on Saturday morning. My heart breaks for them, but I know they are strong together and will look out for one another.

OK...time for bed. I hope your very own weekend was wonderful, Dearies! Come tell me all about what made you happy!

Oct 9, 2020


Well, here we are again, Dearies...doing our thing in the d-chair:

A new tech was assigned to my chair today, and the poor thing was very upset about having to struggle so with Mr Buzzy. I tried to reassure her that it wasn't a reflection of her skills, but the poor thing took it all very personally. Apparently she is accustomed to getting yelled at by the nasty old lady in Pod Two, so when a patient just sits quietly and breathes through the pain and pitiful tears flow silently down her chubby cheeks, it's upsetting.

(I'll never understand that...a patient who comes in here and feels compelled to abuse the very people who are keeping us alive. And they're doing it for very little money and under ungodly stressful circumstances. Yes, we're in pain and don't feel good most of the time, and this whole experience is generally unpleasant....but it's AMBULATORY LIFE SUPPORT for pity's sakes....not the Ritz Carlton Day Spa.)

(End of rant.)

Good progress on Pretty Pumpkins last night:

I finally feel like I have achieved stitchy peace with my "kit", 28ct Picture This Plus linen, and enjoying one project at a time. It must be an age thing, because I look back at this here blog from years past, and it seemed like I was constantly flitting from thing to thing in search of the perfect basket, project, rotation, and whatnot. Now I feel like I am truly enjoying this thing of ours fully and completely and happily.

We were going to order in for dinner, but I got inspired and cooked instead:

Crab cakes, roasted red pepper aioli, mashed potatoes, and green beans.  Oh....it was all so good, and I am happy to report that my on weight today was within acceptable levels. Woo hoo,indeed!

So that's the Friday report from here in Hoosierville, my friends. I'll leave you with a request, please. I got word last night that my goddaughter Sara (who was scheduled to get married on October 2nd of next year) is getting married on Sunday instead. Her fiancé's mom is ending her battle with breast cancer, and the kids decided to move up the nuptials so she could attend. It will be a small family ceremony, but perfect, I'm sure. If you would...please say a little prayer for them for peace and love as they navigate through this.

Happy weekend to one and all! Do something fun and come tell me all about it!

Oct 8, 2020


Here we go, Dearies...Pretty Pumpkins getting ready to jump into the Happy Chair for a Thursday play date with Yours Truly!

I've had a lovely morning...lots of damn good and the paper, a few little paperwork chores, hauling the sewing machine out of the furnace/storage room/closet, edging the fabric, and gathering all of my supplies.

(As you know, I have a "kit" that I put together for my working project. Here are the contents: chart, fabric, threads, q-snaps, scissors, needles, project bag, grime guard, accessory pouch, needle minders, chip clip (to hold the chart on the q-snaps), highlighter, and thread palette.)

So now I'm going to get my afternoon iced tea, throw the blanket on my legs, enjoy the cool breeze coming in the window, and get stitching!

Happy Thursday!

Marybeth asked how I attach the pattern to my frame/q-snap. I'm sorry this was confusing...I make a working copy of the chart and attach it to my project with a chip clip or my needle minder/magnets to keep it right in front of my face:


Oct 7, 2020


I wrote this in 2008, on what would have been her 75th. Today, she would have been 87. Hard to imagine!

You've already met Dad. Here's Mom. Vaceila Helen Loukos Rich. Mom would have been 75 years old today. Seems impossible to imagine, since she was only 54 when she passed away.

Her "real" name was Sig. People who knew her never even realized that she had another name...she was Sig at work and at home and on her driver's license and checks. Chrissy and I never knew how she got that name until Uncle Connie told us that he was the one that gave it to her when he was little. (He's her baby brother). Apparently, he couldn't say Vaceila, so what came out was Sig. And Sig it was her whole life.

Mom was the middle girl in a family of three boys and three girls. She was born and raised in Lima, Ohio and according to her school yearbooks, was quite the girl about town. She graduated from high school and went to work for City Loan and Savings, and I think she was eventually Secretary to the President.

Mom had the uncanny ability to be the most elegant and classy lady in the room while keeping her warmth and great sense of humor. She could talk to anybody...from Westinghouse CEO's to the kid next door. She had a way of making you feel special and important and that you were the only thing that mattered to her at the moment.

She was smart and the most generous person you'd ever meet. She was fun and creative and organized and loving and careful with other people's hearts. She could be ornery too, and would sometimes put her hands on her hips and say "I's de boss and you's the bossie" whenever Chrissy or I would try her patience. She didn't yell, but she could pack a mean wooden spoon if she had to. The only time she ever "spanked" me was when I was seventeen years old and came home after curfew. She waited until I was at the top of the staircase to show me that I was never too big to be taught respect. I quickly found myself at the bottom of the staircase feeling like a schmuck for getting my butt kicked by a 5 foot 2 inch woman wearing a robe.

Mom grew Boston ferns on the front porch of our Lima house, and every year she gave them away to folks who had stopped by to admire them. She loved to work in the yard and always did so in jeans and a long sleeved shirt no matter how hot it was outside. She didn't like the sun and I don't think I ever saw her in a bathing suit (despite the fact that she had a great figure and "knockout" legs).

When Mom met Dad she said she knew that he was "the one" on the night of their first date. She said that she was looking out the window of the car thinking about what a nice guy he was and was wondering if he would ask her out again, when Dad said "Yes". "Yes what?" from Mom was answered by a "Yes, I'm going to ask you out again" from Dad and she figured he had read her mind.

She was an amazing wife and mother and homemaker and friend. She was also an artist and an avid needlepointer. Mom did needlepoint canvases on penelope canvas using the sewing method and every single stitch was perfect. Chrissy and I have most of her pieces and we look at them and treasure them every day. Mom may have been a beautiful stitcher, but she couldn't sew a button on to save her life. Both Chrissy and I remember Mom standing at the ironing table with our school uniforms and a roll of "stitch witch" cursing up a storm.

Mom could make a sandwich like nobody else, and she was famous for her Siggie Specials on Thanksgiving.....turkey, celery sticks, salt, pepper, and mayo on Pepperidge Farm white bread. No matter how stuffed you were after dinner, you just HAD to have a Siggie Special.

We moved a lot when we were kids, yet neither Chrissy nor I can ever remember a box or packing paper in a house for more and ten minutes after we arrived. Mom had a way of moving us into a new home in such a way that you thought you had lived there your whole life. There was never chaos or a mess, and by the time the truck had pulled out of the driveway the pictures were on the walls and the fridge was stocked.

Our beautiful, amazing, fantastic, funny, smart, generous Mom died on November 12, 1987 from colon cancer. She never complained or cried or bitched about the fact that she got it...she just put on her lipstick and got through it the best way she knew how. 

Happy Birthday, our sweet Siggie. We miss you more than life itself and we want the world to know how special you were to everybody who knew you.