Friday, December 18, 2009

The knitted garden

While I was browsing around Joann Fabrics the other day, I came upon this book called Jan Messent's Knitted Gardens. I was charmed and even went as far as suggesting it to my family as a possible Christmas gift for moi.

This is the kind of thing that totally captures my attention but unfortunately I doubt I have the attention span or patience to actually do any of this, but a girl can daydream, can't she?

Just look at those monks tending their cabbages! Aren't they adorable?

You can find more pictures from the book here. Ms. Messent also has books on a knitted farmyard and enchanted castle. So sweet.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Black ice, books and a good afternoon

Had a fine afternoon last week when Lee dropped by before picking up her daughter at college. We went for lunch at a local downtown restaurant and then poked around the Gallery in the Vault next door. Neither of us bought anything but I was a tiny bit tempted. There are shops like this in our downtown but I rarely go in them just because I know I will never buy anything. I don't yearn much for stuff anymore. I suppose if I had the money I would buy a different house and decorate it to my heart's content, but the focus now is on college funding (new parents out there...think wisely and save) and retirement. These kinds of places are great for buying gifts though.

Lee brought us some yummy yummy buckeyes, knowing that my husband is a peanut butter freak. We have all indulged. We keep slicing off little bits so that it doesn't feel like we are pigs. Lee...there are still 2 left! Thank you for the treat!

My poor daughter had a car accident on Sunday. She has only had her car (her first car, paid for by herself) for 1 1/2 months. She was driving home from spending the night at her friend's house and hit a patch of black ice and lost control and slid into a pole. The airbag went off so I guess the impact was pretty hard. She's OK but the car is totaled and she is very sad. It was hard for her to stop crying that day and every time she thinks about it she gets upset. I am thankful that she wasn't hurt and that she thinks she was only going maybe 25 miles an hour.

We have already heard from our insurance company and thank goodness I had gotten the collision insurance and it turns she is getting back more money than she paid for the car. Now we just have to decide if another car will be a possibility. Just a few more gray hairs for dear old mom and dad.

I love the work of the writer Abigail Thomas. I found this cute story by her at the Oprah website. I picked up her book A Three Dog Life last summer on the discount table at Borders and was so glad I did. Sometimes you just find someone that puts your own thoughts into words and it feels so good to know there is someone else out there that thinks and feels like you do. Here is her website.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Taking a breath

Thanksgiving has come and gone and that means that Black Friday has come and gone. The phrase Black Friday sounds so ominous to me, like it should be a day of mourning or something. I did mourn when I had to get out of bed at 12:45am in order to be at work by 2am. That means I got maybe 1 1/2 hours of sleep, shorter than a good nap. I was home by 11am and justifiably wiped out so I slept a good part of the day. I worked 8 days in a row and have a brief respite today with way too many things to do! I don't want to complain about having the hours, but man, I feel burned out.

I am trying hard to at least be helpful and pleasant dealing with customers, but suddenly there are many many needy shoppers out there, asking us to do what seems impossible at times. And the phone calls, OMG. I have to answer the phone while waiting on customers, but first I have to find the phone beneath the piles of returned merchandise. I am sure I sound impatient and rude when I ask to put someone on hold while they are in the middle of a long winded explanation about how they bought something but forgot to get the gift receipts and could they now get the gift receipts? Yikes!

I am stitching a little and still so excited and inspired about it. This is my recent finish which I was furiously working on at Camp Gottastitch. Ran out of 3 colors of thread and had to wait for 1 color that I had forgotten to buy in Berlin at the little cross stitch shop there. Hoping I can get this "finished finished" and sent to my mother for Christmas.

Birds of a Feather Bitter Flower
32 count BOAF barn owl linen

Speaking of my mother, she sent me a touching birthday gift last month. This is a letter sent to her by her mother after I was born. I was so touched by receiving this letter. I had no idea mom had saved all of her letters. My father dragged my mom around from state to state when I was young. I was born in Texas and my grandparents lived in Minnesota where my parents were born and raised. I wish we had stayed in Minnesota or in Iowa, which I really liked. There really is something to be said for having roots and family nearby.

Last but not least by any means, here is a snap of this cute Prairie Schooler ornie that was given to me by Lake Stitcher Lee. Thank you ever so much Lee! You are the best!!!