Thursday, September 29, 2005

I have a new Neice!

My little sister (well she's 26, but still little to me!), gave birth to her first child yesterday morning at 12:04am. She had a beautiful baby girl she and her husband have named Maryanne Ilene. She was 7lbs 15oz and I forgot to ask the length.

We went up there (they live about 2 1/2 hrs north of us) after we picked up Alex from school yesterday afternoon to meet the new cousin. I meant to bring my digital camera, but forgot so no pics. When we got there we found out the hospital had a policy that didn't allow kids under 12 onthe maternity ward. I didn't think any hospitals did that anymore. So Sean ended up watching the kids in the lounge while I went in and visited the baby and new parents. Sean came in a bit later and visited a bit while I took a turn watching the kids. The nurse did relent a bit and said that Alex could come in and take a peek as long as he washed his hands (which I would have made him do anyway), so at least he got to see the new baby. Maryanne is a real cutie but of course not as cute as my babies were.

I was able to finally get rid of most of Katie's clothes she's outgrown though - so that's a bonus. So many cute outfits I sorted through to give them, almost made me want another. I said ALMOST.

In other unrelated news, Katie has been doing really well with the potty training. Much better than I had even hoped she would this young! She still isn't telling me she has to go, but she will start trying to pull her pants down, or diaper off sometimes when she has to go. I think if she had more words she probably would be communicating it to me. I've been trying to get her to say "potty" so she can tell me when she has to go, but no such luck. I did get her to go poopy on the potty yesterday, so that was a big victory and she definitely knows what the potty is for and goes every time I put her on it. She is so cute about it too. She will sit there and then when she starts going she gets this little self-satisfied grin on her face. :)

As far as my stitching goes, I did get some more in on my Angel of Summer. I'm pleasantly surprised at how she is turning out. I am doing her on MGC Textiles linen which isn't an exact evenweave, so she'll be a little fatter than the designer intended. I really like the color though, the pinks are showing up really well on the blue linen. I just worked on the wings this time and got sort of bogged down in that so I'm going to move on in the rotation and try to get in a little bit more on EGW before my next RR piece comes. Here is a quick pic of my progress on Angel of Summer so far.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

I Got Tagged

by Autumn

7 Things I Want To Do Before I Die:

Become a Grandma (not yet though!)
Get published - in a mag or maybe write a book
See both my children happy in their adult lives
Learn to quilt
Be thin again
Get closer to both my sisters and my dad

7 Things I can do:

Cross Stitch
Cheer up Alex when he is upset
Touch my toes! (new acheivement after a bit of weight loss)
Learn quickly
Analyze a situation quickly and accurately
Think for myself! :)

7 Things I cannot do:

Listen to screeching child for more than an hour (DH is called on to step in)
Have a lot of patience (I'm working on it though)
Climb on the roof of our house to clean the gutters
The splits - tried and tried in high school, but my body just doesn't flex that way
Belong to a gym and keep up with it

7 Things that attract me to another person:

Similiar sense of humor to mine
Fun Laugh
Being laid back
Compliments my strengths with his own
Willingness to learn

7 Celebrity crushes:

Bruce Willis
Keifer Sutherland
Kevin Bacon
Rob Lowe (more when I was a teenager)
Yeah, okay, Brad Pitt
Mel Gibson
Tom Selleck (Mostly in his Magnum days when I was little, and mostly cause my mom liked him so much too)

7 Things I say the most:

"Is that wise? or otherwise?"
"Wash your hands, Alex"
"Do you have to potty, Katie?"
"What I meandersay" (I picked up this little annoying saying from DH, who made it up.)
"Let's go for a walk"
"Is it 8 o'clock yet?" (Bedtime for the kiddos)
"Katie, NO!" (Usually as she is about to get into something)

Tag you're IT:

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Adventures in Potty Training

Katie will be just 16 months on the 28th of Sept. so I wasn't really thinking about starting potty training yet until she started bringing me diapers to change her. This just started this last week, so I decided to try out the potty chair and see what happened. Nothing to lose right?

She didn't have any trouble sitting on the little potty chair I took out of storage from when Alex was potty training. However once we took off the shorts and diaper to actually try to use it for its intended purpose, she got all nervous. I didn't want to push so I just let her up as soon as she started whinging. Before I could put her diaper back on her she peed all over the linoleum. Ah well, at least it was easy to clean up and no harm done. I left the potty chair in the bathroom and thought maybe I'll try now and then and she can work up to getting used to it.

I had the idea this morning to try it first thing when we woke up since most people do use the bathroom first thing in the morning. It worked! She didn't seem nervous at all either - go figure. She just sat down and peed right away! Sean and I gave her lots of praise and clapped for her and showed her her pee and she looked so happy. She has gone twice more since this morning, but both times were at my suggestion. I'm pretty sure she isn't ready to tell me when she has to go yet. But hey, its progress, and I'll take it. :) I'm going to try to keep up with it and have her sit on the potty each time I change her as long as she doesn't protest. Maybe, just maybe, things will start to sink in and she'll start asking to go. At the very least I save a few diapers getting her to go in the chair a few times a day. Hopefully it'll make it an easier transition once she is old enough to read her bodies signals. I figure if using the potty is something she already does by then, that is one less thing to learn.

Anyway, I'm pleasantly surprised at her early progress. :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Just Nan RR

Just finished working on the Just Nan RR that belongs to Autumn. It is really turning out nice. This pic doesn't really do it justice, but the fabric is soft greens and pinks and really compliments the designs chosen so far. Most of Just Nan's patterns this size have pinks and greens too, so I can't really see this turning out anything but beautiful. I'm so sad to be done and have to move onto something else - but alas I do have plenty of other things to stitch.

I stitched the two designs on the right - I only made one small modification to the pattern in the right corner. The chart called for some bead I had no idea how to get which was supposed to be a rose color. I had a darker color petite bead in my stash that matched the darker pink shade already used in the design and went with that instead. I think it came out pretty well. I reallly liked the Spring Peepers design too, which pops in real life a whole lot better than it seems in this scan. The greens and pinks with the little gold frogs is really pretty.

I'll start another square on Katie's blanket tonight and hopefully that'll only take a day or two to do. I'm going to do TW's Playful Kittens on it, so it might take a bit longer as her designs tend to be a bit more intricate even the little ones. After that I'll do some time on Angel of Summer if my next RR hasn't arrived yet.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Round Robins

I'm currently involved in 3 Round Robins. I never thought I'd get into them much, but once I did one I found myself wanting to do all kinds of them. My house RR is actually getting close to the end - only 2 more rounds to go. The pic is my latest happy dance for that RR.

For the next few days I'll be working on my open-themed RR. The theme of this one is Just Nan - and the owner is having us all use those smallish square type patterns she publishs. It is coming out really beautifully so far and I love the fabric. I've been droolling at the prospect of stitching on it since it came in the mail. I'll probably have that happy dance here in a few days cause I plan to just work on that til it is done.

After I finish the Just Nan RR I should be getting a any designer band sampler RR in the mail. No idea what I'm going to be stitching on that yet as I'll have to go by what is already stitched on the piece. I'm sure it'll be fun though - I think I enjoy picking out things for other people's pieces more than I even like getting my own done. :)

After all the RRs are done I'll be doing a few days on Katie's blanket, then a few on Angel of Summer, and then back to EGW. Boy I want that bear done! Hopefully I can finish it in the next few turns through the rotation. I really want it to be done before January cause I have a 4th RR starting then. A Mirabilia RR that I'm really excited about. Sign-ups are still open for it, so I'm hoping we get a few more people, but if not I think we have a good group already. At least the house RR should be almost done by then.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Dumb Bird!

There is a very stupid bird in our garage that is driving me crazy. It obviously doesn't want to be in the garage because it is flying around an chirping incessantly. I tried to chase it out with the broom but the darn thing keeps flying either into the back of the garage, or up between the open garage door and the ceiling. It can't figure out that it needs to fly a little lower to get out of the open garage door. I noticed this bird yesterday and this morning it is still there. I put some crunched up crackers on the floor of the garage near the opening in the hopes it will try to eat them and see the opening once it gets down there - but this is one dumb bird!

Sunday, September 11, 2005


Well, I can sort of see the end of the tunnel on this project, but it is starting to annoy me nonetheless. I've decided I need to rip out the backstitching on the swans. Although the directions say to use 415 - I think 414 will be much better. See how the backstitch is just faded out on this - so knowing there is frogging ahead of me I think I'll put this away for a few days and stitch on my "Yellow Knackered Fairy" piece for the Dinky Dyes competition. I have some RR pieces coming in the mail soon too - so between those two things I should have enough of a break before I have to go back to it.

I just want it done!

Friday, September 09, 2005

Feeling Anxious

I think I've mentioned before that DH has been starting a new job. He was a social worker for 6 years and during that time managed to complete his schooling and hours to become liscensed as a professional therapist. So since I've been staying at home and the salary for a Social worker doesn't really lend itself to single income families, he decided to try to make a go of it as a therapist.

The first week of July he got this new job as a therapist with an agency in our area. The pay and hours sounded great - he can set his own schedule and he should be getting 40% of the fee, which is $150. We got out the calculater and figured out that he would really only need to work something like 20 billable hours a week in order to make what he was making at the old job - so he went for it.

Well... a number of things have come to light after he started working at the new job. Like most insurance companies pay about half of the actual fee - so he really gets about 40% of $75 in most cases - some cases less, some more. And the person who hired him led him to believe he could build a solid caseload very quickly, but it is taking a lot more time for that to happen than we expected. He has been there 2 months and is now billing about 10-15 hours a week. And he doesn't get paid until the insurance pays the agency which is supposed to take 90 days, but often takes longer. We have yet to see a paycheck. DH talked to the billing person at the agency last week and they said he would be getting a check for around $400 on Sept. 23. The next check won't come until about the same time in October. The October check should be bigger, but I'm not sure how much. You can guess that our mortgage is going to be a good chunck more than that.

Now we aren't in danger of losing our home or going without anything necessary, but it still makes me so anxious. What if it doesn't ever get better at this new job? DH tends to dig his heals in, and I certainly don't want to be the one responsible for making him give up his dream of being a therapist, but he has to have a job that will support this family.

The other question I keep rolling around in my head is whether I should go back to work. I've had mixed feelings about being a SAHM vs a working mom for a long time and this is making all the self-doubt creep in like mad. I really enjoy being home with Katie and having a chance to be there if Alex calls from school or needs me to play taxi driver for this or that. BUT I do miss the everyday interaction with other adults. Seems my blog and the needlework BBs I visit have become my biggest social outlet. It is really a vicious cycle because if Sean were making more money I could afford to get involved with moms groups and go to the Y and get out more. I might need to go back to work though to afford anything like that.

I've actually applied for two positions at a local publishing company. I applied there in March and had two interviews then, but they ended up hiring another candidate. So far they haven't even called this time. I'm confused because last time the HR person called me to tell me they selected someone else because she wanted to encourage me to apply again in the future, because I was definitely "in the running". Now they have two similiar positions open and they won't even call? I would really like to get hired there because I would be writing for crafting publications so I would be able to incorporate my crafting hobbies into my job. I also noticed a few other postions on our local job websites that I could apply for but I haven't. I guess I'm hoping I won't have to. Ultimately I don't want to go back to work unless it is for the perfect opportunity (like the publishing company). Problem is I'm starting to feel like staying home is just being selfish and I need to get out there and make some money so that DH can stay where he is at. He really likes the work at the new job - it just isn't bringing in the dough.

Well, I feel a little better getting all that off my chest. Maybe the publishing company will call on Monday.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Cottage Garden Fairy

I finished another rotation on Cottage Garden Fairy and she is coming along pretty quickly. Although a bit of the lightest green color fades a bit on the fabric I chose, the contrast is really nice for the rest of the design. I'm really happy with how it is coming out.

Not too much else going on around here. I mailed out a box of clothes and shoes to someone in LA today to help in the Katrina relief efforts. I also loaded up the car with some more clothes, shoes, diapers and other stuff I had to donate and took them to one of the local TV stations. They announced today that they are taking a few semis down to the affected areas with supplies and that we could drop off donations there. At least I feel like I did something. I just hope someone gets some use out of the things I sent.

Sunday, September 04, 2005


I've been watching all the coverage on TV and I feel so bad for all those people. I just cannot imagine what it would be like to live in those conditions and to lose everything so quickly. I dropped a few dollars in a jug at Walmart to donate to the victims, but it just seems like nothing. I keep looking around my house and seeing all the things I don't really need that I could donate to them. Stitching stash, clothes we've outgrown, Katie's bottles she no longer uses. I guess I could mail them to the Salvation Army in LA or MI or Alabama, but the postage would be crazy and I don't know if they really want boxes of stuff coming in the mail from all over the US. I plan to check with all the local charities here to see if they are getting together things to send and maybe I can donate through them. I know cash is what they need most, but unfortunately we are a bit cash poor right now. I have plenty of "things" to give - just not a lot of money. *sigh*

Thursday, September 01, 2005


I don't know what my problem is lately, but I seem to be frustrated with everything!

I'm frustrated with Katie because she won't take regular naps anymore. She will sometimes take about an hour nap if I stay in her room til she falls asleep, other days nothing will get her to nap. And she definitely still needs that nap cause she is sooo cranky on those days she doesn't nap. This is seriously cutting into my time to get things picked up, my stitching time, and my just general downtime. :(

I'm frustrated with Alex because he is getting to that age where he starts to question everything I tell him. He is just starting to realize mom maybe doesn't have all the answers and so he pushes me on everything it seems lately. In the grand scheme of things I guess this is a good thing as it shows he is learning to think for himself and he isn't really being sassy about it. I just find myself wanting to say "Cause I said so - and that is the only reason you need!" all the time. (For the record, I bite my tongue and explain why instead - but it is frustrating nonetheless.)

I'm frustrated with DH because his new job is not earning enough money fast enough, even though that really isn't his fault. He is a therapist and gets paid on a fee for service type basis and gets a cut of whatever the client's insurance pays. It takes F O R E V E R for the insurance company to pay the company and then for DH to see it in his paycheck. He's been working there 2 months now and still hasn't gotten his first paycheck. We are still doing okay... but I'm not sure we can do this for long.

I'm also frustrated with DH because he seems to never be home (trying to make more money) and when he is home he is catching up on paperwork for the clients he's already seen. I know none of it is his fault, but it is really difficult not to take out all the stress his extra work hours and the empty checkbook are causing me out on him.

I'm frustrated with English Garden Welcome, because the greens will not end and everytime I think I've finished a symbol, I find a stray one somewhere. I did do the swans yesterday and the blue half stitches for the water which was nice, but ended way too soon. Now I'm back to that sea of green. I may have to move on in the rotation soon because of the frustration is just too much. I'm almost to a point where I can backstitch some greenery on the bottom and I think if I do that I might at least get to feel like I accomplished something before I move on.

Lastly I'm frustrated with this darn cold me and Alex and Katie all have. We are all tired and big crabs! (Gee, ya couldn't tell after reading all this whining, huh?)