Sunday, June 4, 2017

I Could Go On and On and On....

Happy Sunday morning from the rancho!

First, let me say that I am on vacation, so this is just residual whining.  LOL  I only had a four day work week, but oh my goodness, trying to get stuff done was almost impossible.  It seemed like everyone needed a piece of my attention until there was none left.  I would come home and crash, just too tired to do anything.

The week started great.  Both hubby and I were off for Memorial Day, and I had a caretaker scheduled for Dad, so we went out to lunch on the coast.  We made a beeline to our favorite restaurant for fish and chips.  So yummy and the view is gorgeous.




Things started to go downhill after that...

My sweet George dog is not feeling well.  I noticed a few weeks ago that he was loosing weight.  Not a lot, but some.  Since he was over 90 pounds, it didn't show as much as it would on a small dog.  By last Friday, I was concerned.  He was slowing down, wasn't interested in anything, drinking too much water and spending a lot of time outside.  My first thought was diabetes. Took him to the vet, first thing they did was a "senior" blood panel.  George is only eight, but for a rottie, that's senior.  The vet reminded me that large dogs age faster than little dogs.  Yes, I know that, but really didn't need to hear that from her.  When the results came back, it shows that he's lost five pounds since last September, has hypothyroidism, and there are some weird numbers on his liver panel. So.....we are now on three medications and will have a checkup in a month.  After three days of medication, he seems a bit more interested in life, but he is still not 100%.  I don't even want to consider any option except for him getting healthy and being my George.

Every day at work was an adventure.  Lots of needy inmates and staff.  I guess they wanted to make sure they got in their full portion of complaints before I went on vacation.  By Friday afternoon, I was ready to escape.  The only reason I didn't make a run to the gate was because I work in a prison and running is frowned upon.  LOL

Yesterday, I was up and moving.  Decided that I would do laundry.  That's it, just laundry.  I have a week to do housework, so I pulled out my project and started to stitch.  I am loving this color.


I am further along...but this is a good picture and I didn't want to waste it.  LOL

Since I was taking a housework break, I decided that the least I should do is make dinner.  LOL  Beef Enchiladas. All of my Mexican friends make fun of me since I prepare them with flour tortillas, but I like them this way.  I call them Enchiladas Gringas.  Very tasty if I say so myself. LOL



I will be driving to LA on Tuesday with my hubby to pick up my stepson.  He seems pretty excited to be heading this way for the summer and hubby is always happy when he comes to visit.

But...next Friday, I am heading to Iowa to visit my son!  I had not made any plans to go, but after the third time he asked if I was coming to see him, I decided that either he has something important to tell me...or he really misses me!  Either way, hubby and I talked it over and he will hold down the fort while I go to visit.  I cannot tell you how much it means to me that my husband is willing to back me up and help with my dad and George.  I am blessed.

And...I am getting a new well!!  After nine months of buying water, we found a driller!   The permit has been issued and he is planning on starting on Monday or Tuesday.  He is saying that it should take about a week.  It will be wonderful to be able to drink water from the tap instead of bottled.  SMILE

So, I will let you go...my rambling could just on and on.  LOL  I will keep everyone updated as I travel cross country.  You know how I love to take pictures!!

Wishing each of you a wonderful week.  Be kind to one another.



Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day 2017





Memorial Day is a time to honor, reflect, and remember those who’ve made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Sit Down, Hold Your Breath, I've Got a Finish!

Happy Sunday evening from the rancho!

I was a slacker all week.  As soon as I sat down after dinner, I was out like a light. I would have to wake up to go to bed.   LOL  Spent yesterday doing chores, yard work, and a bunch of stitching.

Yesterday I put in some serious "sit on my behind on the couch" time to catch up.  I was three quarters done by 8 pm, ready to head to bed.  Then, I got a call from my friend, Gracie.  She was not feeling well. As in so bad she needed to go to the hospital.  I, of course, then spent the next four hours worrying about her and getting updates by text.  Since I was awake anyway,  I just kept stitching. The doctor finally made a decision to keep her overnight around midnight.  The same time that I finished my project.  LOL

This is a free pattern called Grand Old Flag from Notforgotten Farm.  I chose my own colors and added the star since I thought it was cute.  It is not as washed out as it looks in this picture.  LOL


My amaryllis is looking fabulous!!


I have cut way back on sugar and sugar substitutes.  No chocolate, no Diet Mt. Dew, and no ice cream for a week.  I don't hurt as bad as I thought.  LOL  I feel like I am resetting my sweet tooth.  One of the things that I am drinking is green tea.  We have a wonderful spice/tea shop in our town, so I made a little stop last week to pick up supplies.  I found a green tea/pomegranate blend and a Moroccan Mint/green tea.  It took a few days, but I'm starting to acquire a taste for both.  LOL Since it is loose leaf, I needed a strainer. The very nice lady at the shop suggested the style that fits on the sides of your cup.  It gives lots of space for the tea to steep.  Even better is this "travel" cup.  Your dry tea goes in one side, your strainer on the other!!  All you need to ask for is a cup of hot water and you are in business.  I thought this would be a nice thing to have when I go to my son's




My next project is a Hands On Design, My Stitcher's Heart, that was designed for Elegant Stitch in Modesto (my LNS!).  I will do all the stitching at home, then up to Modesto in September for a class on putting it all together!!  I don't usually do fussy patterns, but this is so pretty, and very easy.  And I get to hang out with Lois and all my stitcher friends.  LOL

         

This is the pattern.  If you are interested in more information, check out the Elegant Stitch Facebook site or Hands On Design Youtube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mfi4WlgmFpk

It is time for me to head back to my stitching spot.  Be kind to one another.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Flowers and Fish and Stitching

Good morning, peeps and peepettes!

It is a beautiful Sunday morning here in California, but there are rumors of hitting the 90's later in the afternoon.  I will be closing up the house soon to keep the cool in.

Here is an update on my flowers and my Bunny Ear Cactus. The amaryllis is over six years old.  My son gave it to me when he moved to the Bay Area.  I planted a friend for it.  It seemed lonely in that big pot all by itself.  LOL



My geraniums are in a good mood.



I cleaned out the fish tank last week.  All the water went on my flowers.  Could that be the reason for their happiness?  LOL

There is a population explosion in my tank.  Considering that I started with less than ten fish...the babies must be getting better at hiding.


I am working on a SAL with a friend.  One thread, over two, on linen, and a free pattern from Notforgotten Farm.  Lori is so sweet to share her talent...


My dad is continuing to decline.  Sigh.  Some days are good, some not so good.  We changed out his mattress last week, so had to put him in his wheelchair.  He can't sit up straight, he has become so contracted.  I took this chance to get his hair cut.  I promised my dad that he would never look like a bum, so it felt good to take care of this for him.  You do what you can do for those you love.

I am taking steps to a healthier me.  I try to walk on the treadmill four or five days a week, but I am a sugar addict.  The more I read about sugar and sugar-free sweeteners, the more I am sure that I have issues. LOL   I know that I will never be completely sugar FREE, but there are definite changes I can make.  I've had a headache now for three days...must be the detox!!  I know I can do this.  No one needs ice cream EVERY day do they?  LOL

Off to do my Sunday chores.  I hope that each of you have a wonderful week.  Be kind to one another.


Saturday, May 13, 2017

Took A Little Walk...

Good evening and Happy Saturday from the rancho!

It's been a while since I've checked in and all I can say is...I have no excuse, I'm just old and tired! LOL

I worked on a few projects this past week.  I had found some large wooden spools at Michael's and decided that I should be able to use them for something.  First, I gave them a coat of vanilla white paint and a quick coat of wax.  I thought that I would just tie a bow around the center and call it good.


Not exactly fabulous.  LOL  So, I found some scraps of fabric in my, cough-cough, small stash pile, and after some folding, and ironing, and gluing, here is the revised version.


I think that these are pretty cute and would make a very reasonable exchange gift for a stitching or sewing group.  If you are very crafty, you could make coordinating fobs, either in beads or fabric. Even cross stitched if so inclined!  LOL

I worked on my Cherry Hollow Sampler.  I've finished the bottom vine, most of the leaves, and then headed up one of the sides with the first color on the strawberries.  This project just seems so delicate with the one thread.  Sorry that the picture is so washed out.


This morning was the annual Miracle Miles for Kids, which supports foster children and their families.  I missed last year, but was determined to walk this year's 10K.  Between my hips, my sciatica, and my not-so-graceful falls, I knew I wouldn't walk in my usual 20 minute mile, but I was sure that I could finish.  And yes I did!  I figured it was more of a 22 minute mile, but I finished.YAY!

I liked this year's shirt.  I was number 767.


This is Morro Rock at the starting line.  It was an absolutely gorgeous day, light breeze, no fog.  I walked with my friend, Grace.  She was polite and didn't complain about the slower pace.  Very kind of her...



Isn't it beautiful?  Due to the rains, there were four or five wet crossings.  After the first creek, I don't think my socks ever dried out.  I did get a little blister, too much water and sand between my sock and foot.  I'll be fine by Monday.



At the finish line.  Very happy to see THIS sign.  LOL


And, we look happy!  Why?  Because we were in the shuttle line...no walking back for us!!  Some people RUN this course, and then run back.  Ha, ha, ha, ha...I told Grace that if she sees me running, check behind me, something bad is coming...


Hubby is out of town this weekend, so back to my chores.  Have a wonderful Sunday, be kind to one another.


Saturday, April 29, 2017

Yes, I Finished Something!

Good morning and happy Saturday!

First things first...I lived through my finishing weekend...kind of.  LOL

I was so excited to get on the road.  Out the door on time, radio on the 70's, and I was off like a herd of turtles.  Two rest stops and one bag of my favorite snacks, Jelly Bellys later, I make it to Modesto!
I stop at Hobby Lobby to check for some wooden boxes, nope, but I did find two canvas bags at 50% off. Since we are plastic bag free in our county, I try to pick up bags when I can.

Hop in the car, get lost.  Had my GPS upside down.  Sometimes I'm a little shaky on the difference between north and south.  A couple of u-turns later, I pull into the LNS parking lot.  Check my purse, pull out my stash money that I've been saving for three months and head towards the door.

And trip over a speed bump.  Sigh.  Really?  Really-really?  I managed to twist to the side, so at least I didn't fall directly on my face this time. However, that meant that my ribs took the brunt of the fall. I scraped my hand, but was able to get a Micky Mouse bandaid from the LNS to get that covered.  I didn't want to get any blood on my new stash.  LOL

As I am laying on the ground, thinking that I would never be a ballerina, an older woman from a hair salon ran out and asked if I was okay.  Well....maybe...probably...sure. I do this all the time.  I managed to get to my feet with the maximum amount of embarrassment and waddled into the LNS.

I spent the next four days being very, very careful.  I didn't need another fall and I definitely had some bruised ribs.  After a week, it is still hard to stand, to sit, to cough, to sneeze, to bend over, to lift, Oh.  And the hiccups are horrible!!  But once again, I lived.  LOL

Now for the good stuff...

Finished my birdy box.  Box was painted and waxed.  I did the dry-brush thing so it looks a bit like wood grain.  Found the perfect fabric for inside.  Add some hand dyed pom poms...wonderful!!




Worked on my Cherry Hollow Farm sampler.  I've moved around the corner and started a few cherries. Just to mix up the colors a bit.   I got really tired of stitching with Caper.  LOL


Started a new punch needle.  I finished and mounted it after I got home.  The "frame" is a metal chalkboard hanger.  I just mounted the project right on top of the chalkboard.  Again, love those pom poms!


And anything else?  Nope.  LOL  But I visited, and ate, and visited, and ate some more.  Overall, just to sleep in and not have to worry about ANYTHING was the best part of the weekend.  To sleep eight hours a day was heaven.  Well, and the pom poms.  I love pom poms.  LOL

Home on Sunday and found all these beautiful blooms waiting for me...





Of course, the winds started the next day, so they are already looking a little worse for wear.  LOL

I managed to get through the week with minimum whining.  I took a trip to the doctor on Wednesday, just to check that I hadn't dislocated any bones.  Nope, nothing permanent except for the bruise to my ego. Sigh.  Double sigh.

So today is catch-up day.  Hubby was a trooper, took care of Dad and the animals.  Housework? Nope, but that's okay, not a bad trade for my four days off.  Enjoy your weekend.  Be kind to one another.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

What Makes You Happy?

Happy Saturday evening from the rancho!

Super busy all week.  The budget review finally cleared at work, so I finished ordering food for our fourth quarter feeding.  Wow...I was pretty sure I would run out of food before someone made a decision!  LOL Every year costs go up...and every year budgets are SURE that we can make do with less.  Sigh.  I love my job, but really?

Hubby stopped by to visit my favorite heifer.  She is on a "date" in a friend's pasture.  We like to keep some genetic diversity in the herd, so she's been spending time with her new boyfriend.  Isn't she sweet? Love her black nose and feet.


My rose bud opened up this week.  HUGE!  And I wish you could smell it...delicious...just like a real rose should smell.


I got the finishing bug, so worked on painting and waxing a box for my small cross stitch finish.  The golden chenille is hand dyed.  It wasn't quite thick enough, so I gave it a quick twist.  I'm not sure what I will do with the top where it ends.  Maybe just a knot?  I added the three buttons to balance out the bird. It doesn't look quite so crooked in real life.  LOL



One of the Taco Bells in our town just remodeled their dining room.  I ran into a giant taco sauce packet out on the sidewalk. It (not sure if it was female or male, didn't talk, LOL) had a great attitude and was happy to pose for a picture.  Check out those sneakers!


Sooooo...last January when my son visited, I mentioned that I was getting a tattoo.  I gave it a lot of thought.  I wanted something that meant something special to ME.  My son and I decided that the overwhelming guide to our life is kindness.  Originally I wanted a watercolor flower, then realized that the perfect answer was right in front of me...a picture that my son painted for me about three years ago.


I had just the yellow bird put on...and was not as happy as I thought I should be.  I realized that my skin has a distinct yellow tinge to it and my little bird did not "pop" the way I wanted.  So, headed back to the tattoo shop and asked for some more shading.  Since I was there, I added another bird. Love, love, love it!  I know that tattoos are not for everyone, and I'm sorry if I offend anyone, but I look at mine and it makes me smile.  It reminds of my son.  He is my heart...


Here is a picture of my son's tattoo. He really didn't want birds, LOL, but he did want the same sentiment.


Honestly, even the watercolor parts of mine were a bit uncomfortable.  I cannot imagine the full color that he had done.  I appreciate that the tattoo artist gave me the tattoo that I wanted, and not one word about whether she thought it was silly or weird.  When I asked if it might be better to put a line around the birds to make them pop, she said that she didn't want to lose the integrity of the original picture and could do it with shading. I knew then that I had chosen the correct artist.  I'm not planning on joining the circus and becoming the tattooed lady, but this is a decision that I made for me and I am happy.

I wish each of you a special Sunday and enjoy it in the way that makes YOU happy.  Be kind to one another.



Sunday, April 9, 2017

Rounding the Corner...and More Flowers

Good morning from the rancho....

Here it is Sunday. Sigh.  Where does the time go?  It was a tough week at work.  I was incredibly busy and it seemed like every day was a Monday. It changed my whole attitude and I feel like I am on a never ending trek. Wake up, go to work, take care of Dad, do chores, go to bed.  Wake up, etc, etc, etc.  I know that there is an end, and am terrified, but I am just so tired right now...and it's not a physical tired.  Sigh.  Enough whining.  I have a break coming on the 20th, so I need to just pull up my big-girl panties and deal with it.

I have lots of blooming going on.  The roses bushes next to the house are loaded.  Here are two blooms just waiting to open.



This flower came out of the same pack as the bright yellow one from last week.  I still don't know what they're called.


My irises are in bloom.


On the stitching and crafting front, I worked on my Cherry Hollow a bit this week.  I'm rounding the second corner...


I finished-finished my box.  I double waxed the outside, added a padded bottom, and filled in the edge with black chenille.  I'm happy with how it turned out.



Wishing each of you a wonderful Sunday and week.  Be kind to one another.