Stitching and Life in the Company of Pets

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Dogs are fine

Well the general consensus seems to be that switching over to the new blogger was painless, based on the several comments I got on my last blogger entry. Maybe I'll target next weekend to push the button and see what happens.

Both my dogs are back home and doing fine. All the various lumps and bumps that were going to be biopsied came back as negative for cancer or pre-cancerous cells, just fatty lumps which the vet says are common for their breeds and size. I just need to keep an eye on them to make sure they don't change, or grow large enough to cause problems due to size and placement. Jazmine's teeth were cleaned and they didn't find any problems, so she's good for a while on that. However, when they were cleaning Sasha's teeth they found two cracked rear molars which had to come out. Poor baby, they both love to chew, and her chewing amount had not slowed down, so she's been chewing a while on cracked back teeth. I can't imagine how that would feel. Dogs are so good and take life as it comes, you really have a hard time telling anything is wrong sometimes. I do feel guilty though, like I should have known they were cracked and causing difficulty. Anyway, they are out now and she is on antibiotics and pain meds. These get tucked into soft dinner rolls, so she thinks she's getting treats. Since can't give something to one without giving to the other, Jaz gets a piece of roll too. Between getting these "treats" and me being home from work for the holidays they are getting spoiled. I don't think they are going to be happy when I go back to work on Tues. Thank you all for your good wishes for both of them.

I have gotten some stitching done, and finished another cat and pumpkin set on my topper. However, as it looks so similar to what I posted before, I'll wait until I get another one or two sets done before I post an update. Kim has posted the finishes she got done, my favorite is the little groundhog. If he looks familiar it is because at various times I've done 3 of him myself, he's a popular little guy. I also have the little nativity pattern she did, buried somewhere in my stash. The frame she wants to find for it sounds cute.

I won't be doing much stitching this evening when we ring in the new year as I'll be over at friends playing games. However, hoping to get stitching time in tomorrow (my last free day before I'm back at work). I have the second Pirates of the Caribbean movie on DVD that I haven't watched yet (at least on my new DVD) so I'm looking forward to watching that and stitching.

Hope you all have a Happy and Safe New Year.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

New Blogger and Topper update

Has anyone tried the new blogger? I keep getting this message that blogger is out of beta stage and I can now update to the new one. Looks like the new blogger is linked to google. I'm concerned that if I click to update, I'll lose formatting, lose previous entries/pictures/links/etc..,that entry of information or uploading pictures will be harder, etc... so am curious if anyone else is now using the updated version and what they experienced when they converted.


I just spent several days at my DB, DSIL, and my two nephews visiting. My folks went too so they had a full house. We had a great time and plenty of good food. I'm lucky that both my mom and SIL like to cook (since I don't do much of it). Also got to stitch a fair amount. My DSIL is also a cross stitcher, and we are trying to get my mom into it. Most of the time I worked on my Jack and His Cat tabletopper, so here are a few updates. This first is a close up of the two cat and pumpkin motifs I have done. I have all the border detail done, just have to do 6 more cat/pumpkin sets and the nunstitching.


Here is a full shot of what I have done. Unfortunately, taken with my camera phone it is washed out and a little fuzzy, but the scanned shots show you the colors it is in. The border was fun, as it was using caron watercolors of various shades, so the bright colors and the purples were varigated already, which meant I didn't have to change thread a lot, always a plus.

Tomorrow and Wednesday will be long days. Both of my dogs are going in to have their teeth cleaned as well as having lumps (Sasha has 4 and Jazmine 1) biopsied. Sasha has had one other small lump (in addition to the 4 being checked tomorrow) for about a year that is benign and doesn't seem to change. Jazmine has had her lump almost a year too. However, while it was benign when they tested it before, it has started to grow. Evidently with the breed my dogs are and their age, lumps are common. All the lumps are small enough so if there is a problem hopefully they can take them out at the same time while they are under. Since they are both older (11 and 10) they are trying to do what they can all at once since being sedated like that is hard on older animals. While they are both out, they'll clean their teeth as well. At least that should go smooth, as their teeth look in pretty good shape. A couple years back Jazmine had to have a couple of her back molars pulled as she had managed to crack them. Only thing the vet could figure was she chewed on something so hard that it cracked the teeth, like chewing on rocks. Yuck, now why would you want to chew on something that hard, and do it hard enough and long enough to crack your teeth? I love my dogs, but they are weird sometimes. Anyway, fingers crossed that they both come back with no cancer in any of the lumps.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Snow

No stitching to post on this entry, just a quick one to show you the weather my daughter is having in Colorado at the moment. She works in the Walmart there, and the roads and things are so bad due to the snow storm they have been having that they closed the Walmart and told everyone to go home (or called them to tell them not to come in). It takes a lot to have one of those stores close. Thankfully neither of us was flying this weekend, as the airports are a mess with the Denver airport being closed for almost two days (combine that with England's airports having problems with having to close due to fog and there are a lot of unhappy travelers right now). Anway, here are the pictures she sent me -



That is my daughter near a carport. She is about 5' 5", so you can get an idea how deep it is.



This is a side view of the parking lot, the first floor apartments are almost totally lost, the second and third floor ones are what you are seeing.



Another shot of the parking lot. The large truck you can see is one of the oversized, jumped up ones, which is why it is standing out. The little one in the middle which is almost lost I thought was one of the small cars, like a minicooper or similar small one. However, she said it was a mid size car like a malibu or impala.

Amber and her friends went out to play for a bit, and she said after about a 1/2 hour when she looked out the window, you couldn't even tell they had gone outside. Not much is moving when they look at the streets, and from the third floor they have a pretty good view. Looks like it will be quite a while before everyone gets dug out and travelers get on their way for Christmas.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Scarf and weird things

We had wonderful weather today, it was up around 56, bright and sunny too. For mid-December in Michigan, very strange weather. I think they said we broke a record for how nice it was, I was able to run around doing errands in a sweatshirt, if I didn't know better, I'd have thought I was closer to Lynn in Florida.


I decided not to put fringe on the scarf that I made my daughter for Christmas, as thought it might make it to easy to catch in her coat. She's in Colorado, so really can use it, but she also works nights, so alot of times she's in a hurry or it is dark out and I thought no fringe might be better. I still haven't figured out how to use the digital camera I was given, but I think I got two half way decent pictures of it with my camera phone. The yarn is a deep varigated purple, and a kind of squishy chenille (sp?) texture, really soft. I made it long enough to go around her neck twice with a fair amount left. Here's my first picture so you can kind of see what color and fiber it is.


For a model I decided to put it on my giant stuffed Tigger. Tigger is about 2 1/2 foot tall (he's a big guy) and so I think he made a pretty good model. Unfortunately he did come out kind of blurry using the phone to take the picture, but you should get the idea.






I got the last of my stuff organized and packaged up today, I even got my Christmas cards done (which is pretty good for me as I tend to procrastinate). Today was the package and save day at the post office. They are open on Sunday and will help you package your stuff for mailing (with the packaging materials provided free). It is a really good deal, but I totally forgot how crazy it can get. While my stuff is packaged and ready to go now, it wasn't ready this morning, so all I needed were stamps. The only stamps I had at home where the comic book hero's ones, and somehow I thought those might look a little strange on my cards so I wanted to get some of the snowflake ones. Thankfully the stamp machine was not busy and I could get in and out relatively quickly. Tomorrow I'll hit the post office on my way to work when they open at 7 am and keep my fingers crossed that they won't be too busy. I just have two boxes left to mail, so maybe it won't take to long.

Finally, I was tagged by Lynn for the weird things challenge, here are the rules

“THE RULES:Each player of this game starts with the ‘6 weird things about you.’ People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says ‘you are tagged’ in their comments and tell them to read your blog.”

So my 6 weird things are -
1) I still like the boxed Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, I can make a whole meal on the stuff easily. However, I do try to balance it out a little as I like to stir in either corn or peas with it.

2) While my outside looks quite nicely decorated for Christmas, inside I still have not gotten all my Thanksgiving stuff put away, let alone started putting up Christmas decorations. I usually get the inside ones up at the absolute last minute, and then they stay up until late Feb. as I like the lights and overall happy feeling they give so much I hate to take them back down.

3) Breakfast at my house generally has very little to do with what most people think of as Breakfast. Since I kind of eat and run, breakfast is generally something I can hold, so is along the lines of frozen burritos or left over pizza warmed up in the microwave.

4) I really love the musical version of the movie Lost Horizon (the one with Michael York and George Kennedy). While I don't think this is weird myself, since it seems to be one of the few movies that they have not made into a VHS or DVD version that can be bought, and all the critics also seemed to hate it, I guess I'm weird in that I keep hoping that they'll still release it. Given some of the other REALLY AWFUL movies they have released, I don't understand why this one hasn't been.

5) I love chai, latte's, and other goodies from the local coffee shop. However, while I always order them made with skim milk to save calories, I also always have them leave the whip topping on. Most people seem to have both out, or leave both in. I figure the skim milk offsets the whipped topping, and I only have the willpower to be half good.

6) I have one knee that creaks and cracks. If I'm going up or down stairs it is fairly loud. It doesn't hurt, but it does sound kind of gross. Both knees used to do it, but my other knee was bothering me enough I had it scoped and the arthritis in it cleaned out and now it is quiet. Needless to say it does sound kind of weird when I step, as it is quiet, creak, quiet, creak, ....

As for tagging 6 people to pass this on to, I tag Chiara, Isabelle, Lili, StitchingNow, Kim and Carto.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Sasha

Hmmm Lynn's weather pixie has 55 and mine only has 18, and our temperature is still dropping. Needless to say I think I'd rather be in Florida right now.

I've been working on my Jack and his Cat topper, and have finished all the border now and have started on the first Cat/pumpkin motif. However, not enough done yet to make it worth posting a picture. On my other WIP, I still need to get the fringe put on my daughter scarf and get it into the mail. Since it is going to Colorado, I really need to get moving if she's to have it by Christmas.



Since I don't have a stitching picture today, thought I'd post a picture of another of my fur babies. This is Sasha, she's a newfoundland/retriever mix and about 130 pounds. We got her from the humane society about 11 years ago. She was so cute and tiny, still can't believe how big she got. The people at the society had her listed as growing up to be a medium size dog, somehow I think they missed it on that one. Anyway, here's her picture from this summer, when it was certainly warmer. Although with her thick coat she is really loving our colder weather and snow, she'd stay out for hours if I let her.

Monday, December 04, 2006

D'artagon and my topper




Well, blogger appears to like me again. Here is a closer shot of my topper so you can see the color of the fabric better (the color on the camera phone really was washed out wasn't it). I love the color lavender this is on. Once the Cats and Pumpkins are added the colors will be so bright and cheery, and such fun to put out next Halloween. The toppers are nice to work on for a change, as with the 18ct fabric they are easy on my eyes, and since I can work them in hand and use the sewing motion the go quicker then many of my other projects. Generally I work on a Q-snap and use the stick and stab method, which takes longer.


Not much is going on, so I'll post a picture of one of my furbabies, I'll have to find some good shots of the others and post them. This one is D'artagon, doesn't he just look so full of himself? I currently have 3 cats and 2 dogs, but when we got D'artagon (about 8 years ago) he was a stray and was our fourth cat. He was about 1 when we found him, and must of been on his own for awhile as it took him a while to learn to fit in (actually he is still challenged quite often as his idea of being good and not picking on his other fursiblings and mine don't always agree, LOL).



Anyway, since he had such a good time stirring up trouble, and seeming not to notice he was causing it, we called him D'artagon like in the three musketeers. D'artagon is my largest cat, and is about 17 lbs, sometimes I think he is really a minature black panther.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Jack and his Cat

Looking at my last post, it's been a while. I can't believe how fast the time has passed. Hope everyone had a good thanksgiving, I know I did. My family got together at a state park in Indiana that has a wonderful Inn right in the park. My parents, my brother, his wife, and my two nephews, my uncle, his wife and my cousin, and I all arrived on the Wed. before Thanksgiving and stayed till Sat. morning. It was great. The Inn has a inside pool and hot tub, a craft room, a game room, a fireside sitting area with tables/chairs/couches in case you want to spend time there, plenty of hiking trails, a nature center, and a tobagon run. There was a resturant in the Inn as well as several places to eat near by if you drove into town. We had a lot of time to visit, and no one had to cook or clean. For Thanksgiving dinner the Inn put on a huge buffet in one of the conference room areas that they had decorated all up. We had a blast, and I got in quite a bit of stitching. The only sad part was that my daughter, who now lives in Colorado, wasn't able to make it. This is the first Thanksgiving that we haven't been together, and if felt kind of empty without her there.

My DSIL also stitches so we had fun comparing what all we had been working on lately, as well as getting a fair amount of new stitching done. Kim finished almost all of her design "The Sea" which is so pretty, I love the little fish buttons she found for it. I worked on another one of my WIP's and made good headway. I still haven't figured out how to work the digital camera I was given, so I'll have to show you what I did in pieces. This is a shot of what I have done taken with my camera phone, the color is washed out, but you can see most of it.


I couldn't get all of it in, as if I backed up that far I lost so much detail that you really couldn't see anything. I have all of the center part done and the outside border except for the black part of the one left quarter on the outside. I just need to do the 4 black motif's and the bit of black inside the purple design in the corner. The design repeats around the outside edge, so that each quarter is the same.


I scanned a picture of it on my scanner, so the color would show better, but blogger doesn't seem to want to let me upload my third picture tonight so I'll have to post that later. Wouldn't have been able to get all on of it that way either though, as my topper is about 22 inches by 22 inches. It is done on 18ct lavender anne cloth.

When it it done, my final topper will look like this one. I know that I'm kind of off in my season, since Halloween is past, but I'm looking at it as getting a jump on next year's Halloween, LOL.







As to a question I was asked earlier on how many WIPs I have, I really only have about 4 that I seriously work on.

Dogs of Duckport
Garfield (just needs the backstitching)
Snow Ho Ho
Jack and his Cat Tabletopper

While I have some others, they have really drifted more into the UFO pile than a true WIP, and if I don't do some more backstitching on Garfield he'll be close to that soon as well. However, I enjoy small projects that I can get done quickly, so tuck pillows (like my recent Britty Kitty one) turn up in the middle of my other projects fairly often.