Sunday, August 31, 2008

Midnight Stitchers

Martha took this one of me and my table mates! I couldn't figure out which shelf to rest my magnifier on..the first or the second shelf !!
Last night was our "Midnighter's Meeting" for our EGA group. We had such fun. These pics were taken by me at about midnight so we were a bit wilted, but still stitching and having fun! These happy campers above are my dear friends whom you've seen before in my blog, Julia (r) and Patti (l). They are needlepointing. Above are Melissa (r) and her mom. Melissa is well on her way to finishing a gorgeous knitted afghan worked in assorted (at least 60 different!) fingering weight (or sock weight) wools in the connected diamond pattern. It's just an amazingly beautiful thing to behold. I asked her how large it will be, and she said, "Just enough to cover me and go over my head!" LOL Actually, it would have made more sense for me to have had her hold it up so you could see all the colors in it....Deborah not thinking at midnight, it seems! :p Her mom was hand-quilting a mini-quilt in the bowtie pattern for her grandson in sort of Civil War colored fabbies. It was a treat just to sit and watch her. I was sitting with them some of the evening, working on my Cirque des Cercles (bearly) as we were talking and I was watching them! This is interesting about Martha (Gone A Stitchin'....) she's stitching ornies for her children and grandchildren for Christmas. She always trys to give them the same she was trying out this darling little Santa man. We were laughing because it's her first one, she's less than 1/2 way through it, and she was saying she's already sick and tired of it!!! LOL Notice Martha's great new floor lamp/magnifier, too! I just love it. It's so easily portable and light weight. Martha says it's only about $100. You'll have to go to her blog and email her to find out what the brand is. See my sidebar for her blog addy.

Along with Martha above, is Malinda showing off her absolutely fabulous beading. She one of several in our EGA group who love to bead. If you look closely you can see she's made a beaded hood for a Christmas ornament. It's amazing irl. Actually, beading is big in our group. Patti brought in a beading teacher and nearly everyone learned how to peyote stitch, etc., this Summer....except me! ;] I've decided I can't take up one more handcraft!!! I can only admire this one.

Just lovely cross stitching from one of our sweetly, quiet stitchers! :)Isn't this pretty from one of our stitchers who's been stitching more years than some of are old!!??? An example of needlepoint using Gumnuts threads from Austrailia. This is so beautiful irl. It's done on congress cloth, I think.

And, a frightfully, happy ending with me in the's midnight and we've passed our expiration dates! Everyone else is close to home...I have to drive an hour. But, I was well reinforced with coconut lemon creme cake, a small slice of chocolate mousseish cake on the side, and a cuppa about 30 mins. before departure. Yummy!

We had our meeting at the Ronald McDonald's House near the local hospital. It's where all the meetings are held, and we are so grateful they allow us to use the house. We collect items for them; such as bedding and towels. When we have buffet or bring a dish suppers like on Midnighter's, we always make enough to leave for the families who stay there. And, on this night we played Stitcher's Bingo with pennies that were donated to their penny drive to buy something for the House.

Stitcher's Bingo was hilarious!! Everyone got a chance to win, of course. We'd all brought $1 items as prizes for the pot. It was lots of fun. A great game if you want to have fun at your next stitcher's group. We just filled in our bingo cards with our choices of Designers, Fabrics, Fibers, Stitching Tools, and Accessories from the same list passed out to each of us. Then, Martha pulled the names of those things from a hat for the bingo spaces covered by our pennies.

We also played "CLR" for flosses. I'd never heard of this game.... We were told to bring flosses for the game. We had no idea what was going on! Martha brought 3 dice... one with a "C" on it, an "L", an "R", and a "." We each put down 3 skeins of any kind of floss or thread in front of ourselves on the table. One person begins by rolling the 3 dice. "C" stands for "Center," so if it turns up with that you put one floss in the center of the table. "L" stands for "Left" so if you have that, you pass one floss to your left. "R" stands for "Right", you pass one floss to your right. And, "." means you can keep your floss. Once your turn is over you pass the dice to your left. It goes on this way until it comes to the last person still holding a floss. That person wins the center pot! Everybody loved this game, too. Couldn't believe how many gamblers there were amongst us!!! :O

Hope you're stitching happy this week! Hugs, Deb

PS: Yes, Carol, our group does meet at the Ronald McDonald House in Ft. Myers, FL. What a small world! :]

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Georgie's PIF & a New Book

Can you believe how utterly gorgeous this little pinkeep is? Georgie, of Whoomsa fame, sent me the most darling pinky PIF this past week!! It's just ME. Pink, blue and pastels, a little girl figure, bird and's perfect. Then, she included wonderful threads, which I always love, and needles, and a sweet little bathsalts. All in a pink box. Georgie, you make my heart sing with pure joy...I actually yelped and laughed when I opened your package. Thank you so much!!! And, thanks for the pictures, too, so I could share with everyone.

This new book really piqued my interest. Reviewers said it was hard to put down and that it is a great book. It seems to be about a man who is from a formerly very wealthy banking family, who, upon his 90-something-th year goes back in time to Vienna and soon has Sigmond Freud as a mentor, artist friends, lovers, a worthy enemy, an acquaintance with Mark Twain, a heartbreaking crush on a beautiful American woman....and a surprising insight into the young war hero who was to become the father he hardly knew. My little Stella (kindle storyteller) snapped the book up before I knew what my fingers had done!!!

Our local EGA is have a "Midnighters" meeting on Friday, and I'm gearing up for it. This will be my first one....and I hear it's so much fun. We gather at about 7PM and stay all night. Food is no problem, we play stitching games, and we collect things for the Ronald McDonald House (for families of children with cancer at the adjacent hospital)...and we stitch and talk. I'm really looking forward to it...will bring my camera...the sad little instrument. More later on this.

Hugs, Deb

Friday, August 22, 2008

Hurricanes and Helpmates

Hurricane Fay was a flop...and happily flew by us in Naples (SW Florida) with a slight wind and a few tropical rains. I had gotten so excited by her prospect, too! Rounded up all the candles, flashlights, batteries and transistor radio in readiness of an old-fashioned hunkering down like in the old days of camping out in the dark outside with friends...a little bit scarey and lots of fun! So, Fay left me somewhat deflated. I went to bed with a book...lamplight and all!! LOL

I was just delighted to find in the mail a PIF gift from Georgie this past week! It was a darling pinkeep of a Just Nan design. I wish I had a picture. Have contacted Georgie to see if she has one...if she doesn't, I'll have to wait for my husband to fix his camera for a shot. So frustrating!! Just want to tell you how beautiful Georgie's stitching and finishing is, and how grateful I am to receive this piece.

Here is my latest book read. It's mostly about the history of the Mormons and their doctrine of polygomy as told by a First generation family in the 1800's. Much of it is from a woman's perspective; hence, the "helpmate" in my blog title. Please see my Bookish blog for a more comprehensive review. I ended my review by recommending that you wait for it to come out in's good, but not that good!

My next read is going to be "The Lace Reader." I understand that even today there are lace readers in Glouchester, MA. They make their own lace and do readings from them.
Interesting.... Jessica wants me to hold off reading "Gargoyle" so she and our longtime, dear friend, Allison, can read it with us.

Actually, we're all dying to read "Gargoyle" but the two girls have promised to read another book together first. I think I mentioned this book in an earlier blog. I hope we're not building it up too much for ourselves!

I want to thank those who commented on my last blog entry. It's not easy to be a "thinker" and participater in these days. It takes time to read about and to view on tv the political, national and international happenings, and to consider how they affect all us. I think it was Thomas Jefferson who said, and I'm very loosely quoting him, "if the people of the United States do not have the courage to stand up and to express themselves about policy and practices in the Country, then they will surely lose their freedoms and democracy...and the United States will be no more." Our Declaration of Independence was something men died to bring about.

It's important for the land that I love and cherish as a military brat to stand strong and brave. I'm really furious when I see our troops misused and our democracy and freedoms kicked around. That's all I was saying. I appreciate those of you who understood and took a stand with me on it.

Hugs, Deb

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

August 2008 th

Elizabeth Edwards talks to People magazine this week about living life to the fullest and at the same time preparing for the worst as she battles cancer.
Elizabeth tells the magazine she "feels an urgency" to do things like sort through old toys and clothes. She's also got a computer file named "dying letter," a message-in-progress to the three children she will leave behind. It's full of advice such as how to choose a spouse and a church, she says, and was inspired by the movie Terms of Endearment.
Edwards says she has felt no side effects from chemotherapy she started two months ago and is losing weight because she wants to, not because she's ill. She's got two benchmarks coming in July: a bone scan that will tell her how well her treatment is working, and her 30th wedding anniversary on July 30, when she wants to be able to fit into her wedding dress.
You may remember that John and Elizabeth Edwards held a press conference in March to tell the country that the breast cancer she discovered at the end of the 2004 campaign had metastasized to her bones. They said John would continue in the Democratic presidential race and Elizabeth would be active on the campaign trail. Elizabeth wrote an account of her illness and her eldest son's death at 16 in the best-selling book Saving Graces.

August this year will be known for the Press focus on: The Olympics in China...Americans killed and mobbed; John Edward's love affair & illegitimate baby scandal, and his wife Elizabeth's answer via her brother and friends in "People" mag. above; the Democratic Party Convention sans the former...but including Bill Clinton who is the all time winner of love affairs and disloyalty; War and more War; recession and hard times in the US while Bush is sending more troops and aid to Iran, Georgia and Afghanistan, confronting Russia, and allowing HIV immigrants to come into the US so we can put them on our welfare and medicare tickets...which means more of our taxes all around spreading thinner. Our taxes pay for illegal aliens' healthcare and welfare when they don't even speak our language and expect to have social services speak Spanish...and our own soldiers and their families have to struggle for proper healthcare coverage and hospital care!! It's an outrage!!
Higher oil prices, home and business forclosures at record highs, stockmarkets down at lowest since the 1920's. Joblessness that is demoralizing men and women across the Nation. More crime, more murders, more suicides, more bankruptcies... Medical care waining as more healthcare assistants and doctors are either leaving the profession, or students are deciding not to become doctors because of the gov't restrictions on healthcare and insurance being put on them. More frustration with our own government leaders and the losses our own country is feeling.

On the bright side: Babies are still being born. Many families are still holding together. There are thousands of people of faith who have hope in God. The seasons come and go and we find joy in that. Children still laugh and some still don't know the anxieties and stresses their parents face. Football season is coming up. The players still get paid big bucks, as do the baseball, basketball, hockey players and golfers....we know our priorities in this our husbands, sons and fathers are distracted for another little bit of time. We still have cars and gasoline. But travel is down because of expensive gas. Air travel is expensive & sketchy because of fuel, explosions, higher fees, passengers bumped from flights and delayed for hours or days in other cities, and when the airlines lose money...we fear they don't get new equipment, they just repair things alot... :[ We still have grocery stores, so far, though some are closing. We still have our local banks, so far, though some are failing. We've lost many shops in our area like Starbucks, AC Moore, KMart and others, but we still have WalMart.

Does this sound like I'm mad? Along with alot of my friends, I'm mad and frustrated. I'm sad about the way we've lost touch with our government leaders. We feel as if our Country has become locked in by a dictatorship or something which has set about the destruction of our society to an unbelieveable degree and so quickly that it's impossible to stop it! I feel it's like soaking a thin cookie in hot's melted away before you can catch it! It's a frightening time in the USA. The presidential candidates are mediocre at best in most peoples' opinions. It's been a vote of "the lesser of two evils" so far in the elections. It's a frightening time such as the older people say they've never seen.

For the first time in 30 years, women friends of my age are talking about walking on the White House in Washington, DC, with plaqards and petitions. That hasn't happened since we were protesting for Women's Rights in the '60's and '70's. No matter who the next president is, he's going to have alot of angry Americans to deal with!

Sorry about the downer, but sometimes people around the world need to know how Americans feel in these times. It's not all stitching and roses over here. The only people who aren't affected as much are the super wealthy...and by that I mean the multi-multi-millionaires and billionaires. Men such as the Bush's and the Exxon execs., and the heads of industry that support the war efforts....people such as that.....
I do feel indignant for Elizabeth Edwards, for the man killed in China and his wife who was stabbed, for the stockmarket thrashing around, and for darling little Caylee Anthony, 3 yrs old, who has been missing in FL for 8 weeks. But, the news just uses these things to distract us from the larger problems at hand. We're in big trouble in this Nation...and we know it. We are becoming the proverbial "camel with its head in the sand."


Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Gift of Stitching Magazine & Books

This month's issue has to be one of my very favorites. I love the cover and Praiseworthy Stitches' wonderful sampler. Aren't the pomegranetes fabulous as a border!? Every month I look forward to this extraordinary stitching magazine, yet, I don't think I've mentioned it before in my blog. It always offers a well-rounded palette of charts to stitch and notes, interviews and ads to look over. Sometimes there are only two or three designs I would stitch in an issue, sometimes I love them all...but TGOSM is an absolute treasure to me and will remain in my stitching library as long as it's published. Kirsten Edwards is a genius to have thought of it, and to be such an awesome publisher!

If you go to my Bookish Blog, (see link at right) you'll see my latest blather about a book I'm reading called, "Walking on Eggshells, Navigating the Delicate Relationship Between Adult Children and Parents." It's my latest "medicine," which I'm finding I really need...yuck...and must take. You thought parenting was over when they left for college, didn't you? Maybe when they graduated and got married....? Ha!! Read this one and weep! Parenting is a life-long thing, ladies and gents, and it's not for the faint of heart. :[
Ooooo, boy, I'm very intrigued by this book. It's a new one in my pile, or rather on my little Stella (Kindle Storytella). Below is a quote from Part One:
"The Lace Reader must stare at the piece of lace until the pattern blurs and the face of the Seeker disappears completely behind the veil. When the eyes begin to fill with tears and the patience is long exhausted, there will appear a glimpse of something not quite seen.
In this moment an image will begin to the space between what is real and what is only imagined."
Very mixed reviews on "Gargoyle" are coming out, and I had to have this book. It's on surface about a wild, druggie sort of guy who gets into a car accident, becomes horribly burned, and then plans his suicide while he's getting his treatments to leave the hospital. He meets a young woman who's slightly "different" and who becomes his salvation and his love interest. A simplistic review as I haven't read it, yet. Evidently, people have strong reactions; they either love this book or hate it!

Most of my day was spent staring at a full laundry room, wandering about my house taking in the clutter, going through my stitching charts and tools, and sleeping. It was kind of a wasted day...but it was so hot outside, it was all I could muster myself up to do!

Do many of you watch "Nancy Grace? " I have loved Nancy for years. I started really watching Court TV when the "Lacey Peterson" trial was taking place. Her horrible husband, whose name escapes me, is now rotting in jail for murdering her and her tiny little, unborn baby. Remember that case? I truly believe it was an act of God that that baby washed up to shore.

Anyway, I'm on a new Nancy kick...watching her every night. And, I'm watching "The Closer," "Dexter," and "Cold Case," too. Jessica was over the other day with Kellan, and she asked me if I thought I could ever commit murder! LOL I was a little stunned, but also tickled. Why? She said because I'm always intrigued and watching murder stories and Nancy Grace and things!! :] I said, "I've learned never to say never in this life. But, mostly I'm just fascinated by murder mysteries and criminal minds. I would love to write mysteries and I love to read them." It was a funny question that had never occurred to me....but, have you murder mystery fans asked yourselves that??? LOL

Sending love and hugs long distance to friends and family,

PS: Thank you so much for your sweet comments about Kellan. We are so blessed to have him. Thanks!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Thank You List

Here is an update of Kellan, requested by Wendy. Thanks, Wendy. He's so sweet and spoiled! :) Here is a picture of one of Jessica's yorkies, named Bailey (named after Rompole the Bailey of English novel and BBC fame...and because 2 of her brothers are lawyers :). Bailey actually talks to Jess, he's shy and precious. Next to Bailey is her first bear...a Steif bear named Zody...he used to growl. Bailey and Zody are on the daybed in Kellan's room where his mommy sleeps at night right now to keep him fed when he's up during the night.
This is baby Kellan "rooting" just because he can smell his mommy because she is touching him and he's hungry! :) He's on his boppy which she uses as support and she's in her rocking chair, too. So what's the problem? He knows what all these surrounds mean!!! LOL

Thanks to those of you who have given me that Brilliance Award for blogs that's floating around nowdays. Whoo! I'm so grateful to be included, knowing the absolutely unbelieveable company it makes me a part of! Thank you so much for nominating me. My blog is just a fun communication to friends and family so I'm humbled to recieve this recognition.
I'm just unable to chose 7-8 I have to pass on this. If you just look to my favorite blogs list to the right, you can see the ones I cherish and love to visit. I think all of you are brilliant and beautiful. Your blogs make me happy and they inspire me and keep me going. I couldn't choose any of you above others ...would be like choosing one of my children over the others!! I commend you each and every one for taking the time to share your creative arts, your hearts and your homes with eachother. That shows heart and friendship that's rare...and, yet, very typical of stitching friends across the world. I'm proud of all of you!!
Must go and sleep...Good-night friends. Good-night, Jon and Jessica.
Love, Deb/Mom/Mutti/Grammie