Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanksgiving Part II

GR&DF thank you for your very kind comments - you're the best!!

The day after Turkey Day we usually spend going or visiting in the city or doing something as a group. This year they all wanted to get out of the city and take a little road trip. We had talked about what might be fun and doable - and eventually narrowed it down to driving along the PCH US 1 south and visiting Santa Cruz.

We started off with a delicious breakfast at Louis' at Point Lobo. With some beautiful views of a very calm Pacific Ocean we had a great breakfast and then it was off on the days adventure.

Driving along the coast was just great. It was a beautiful day and not much traffic. We made it to Santa Cruz early enough that there were very few people about. We walked along the beach Boardwalk (more Santa Cruz Boardwalk INFO) and to the Arcade...

Inside this great old building are lots of shops and a video game arcade.

Matt and John are both video game fanatics and really enjoyed all there was to do. They even had a "historic" corner for those of us who where around in the early days of the video game...

I remember when this was a really popular game. Now it is consigned to a dusty corner.

We left the arcade and walked along the beach and to the Pier.

It is hard to see in this snap but this is the Pier looking from the Arcade Building. There are lots of restaurants and shops out on this Pier. You can drive out on it and there is parking all along the length of it.

Looking back at the park from the Pier.

Walking along the Pier you find this great old fishing boat, you also see

Tanks of Dungeness crabs

There was even this great old 1935 Ford Woody parked out on the Pier.

This is looking back down the Pier towards the beach - you can see that there were very few people out there with us.

We walked back to the park and John and the kids road some of the rides. Then it was back to the city.

We drove over to the Mission to Taqueria El Farolito - a hole in the wall small place that serves some very delicious Burritos. There a re few of these el Farolitos around but this one seems to turn out the best food consistently!!

That about wraps up Thanks giving and our adventures. Thanks for stopping by, do come again!!

Take care,

Monday, November 29, 2010

A Wonderful Thanksgiving!!

GR&DF I hope this finds you all doing well after the long weekend!!

Starting last Wednesday evening after running errands for most of the day - I finished up cleaning the crystal for the Thanksgiving Table -

I found and set out my turkeys - I love my paper turkeys - they add quite a bit of colour !! I usually only haul out my grandmothers crystal for big dinners and Thanksgiving is a "big" dinner in my book - and - I was having my family in so I wanted it all to look nice!! I also hauled out a ton of the flatware and polished that stuff up. The table sparkled so! I knew that my sister was bring two delicious pies - a pumpkin (no snap due to it getting gobbled up really fast!!) and a Marionberry...

If you ever get a chance to taste a pie from Lee Farms - you should as they are really delicious!!!! I also knew that another guest was bringing a delicious ice cream pie so there was no need for me to make any other desert - but I got a wild hair and had to have a cake. So, I got the stuff together....

I also had a nice little mug of the old eggnog, and what is a little extra nog to keep it all festive!!! Here is a snap of the cake ....

It was super easy and went over big time with everyone!! I will post the recipe on BB this week.

Another thing I tried making this year were diner rolls. I do know why but I really have no luck with them... this year was a bit different- I found an easy bread machine recipe and they turned out great - here is a snap of them on the rise...

They got really big but where pretty tasty, if I do say so myself!!

Here we all are sitting down to the first course - Virginia Peanut Soup -

and here is a snap of the table after dinner.........

What a mess!! We where all full and ready for naps!!

This ends part one of the weekend - thanks for stopping by, stop by tomorrow for the second part of the weekend!!

Take care,

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Some Commenting and a Few Days Off

GR&DF thank you so much for your kind words about my sampler progress. It is a super piece and is working up pretty fast.

There where a couple of comments I wanted to answer -

Erica - I know what you mean about the wreath getting to big - even at 36 ct it is going to be about 14 or so inches across. I am not sure about the finish right now, but I am leaning towards an actual wreath to hang.

Margaret - the Christmas Cactus that I replaced bloomed tons and tons and all the time. I guess my continual neglect did it some good, it seemed that it was always either in bloom or just about to bloom. I do hope that this one follows that pattern as the blooms are really pretty.

Sandy, in my very humble opinion about silk stitching: I love the feel of the stuff and the look of the finished pieces. Don't get me wrong I love me some over dyed cottons, and have a ton of them and the way a piece looks when you use them - however, its the silk that really melts my butter. I have never had a problem with silk "melting" under the iron. I iron everything I stitch (not a very hot iron, but a warmish iron all the same) I also have a little steam flow to get out the wrinkles in the linen. I know that I run the risk of the colours "bleeding" but a little steam is what it takes sometimes. Since silk is a natural product and not synthetic I see no problem with a light iron across the needlework - and from behind. I would never place an iron directly on top of anything I stitched.

Last but certainly not least a question from Denise - yes, my sister and her family drive down Washington. It does take them all day, but the drive is lovely and pretty quick. They will usually see some snow in the mountains and that is always lovely.

I just wanted to wish everyone a great few days off and a wonderful Thanks giving!!!

There you go sports fans, thank you all for stopping by!! Do come again!!

Take care,

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Busy Damp Weekend

GR&DF - woohoo!! Only a two day week this week!!!! I love a short week! We will be super busy at home almost every evening and then Holiday Busy - and then if everything runs smoothly a very lazy Sunday will wrap up it all up.

Saturday morning we got an early breakfast in the restaurant at the Flower Market -

... and after that went shopping at the different dealers in the Market. After 10 am it is opened to the Public. I had specifically wanted to get a new Christmas Cactus - since my big beautiful pink one had bitten the dust, I picked up this beauty...

It is a really pretty apricot colour and should do very well - I hope. Here are some snaps of the market. It was a lovely morning -

These looked very Christmas all lined up.

This was taken inside Fantastico's - they only do artificial and had all the trees up and decorated....
We where home by 11:30 am and before the rain really started to pour. We had some major showers during the night with lots of thunder and lightening, which is very unusual for this area. It scared the who hounds out of their little minds, but we didn't loose power so I was very grateful!!

On Sunday morning we started off with a 6:45 am grocery shopping extravaganza - I knew from stopping off the night before that the crowds would be getting bigger as Sunday wore on - since Saturday evening was a total nightmare!!! By getting the bulk of the Holiday shopping done - and I mean about 90% - done and out of the way so early we got over to breakfast at Eddies early and from there went on over to the Farmers Market to pick up some veggies. We had it all done and where back home by 11:00am. Even though we were scheduled for lots of heavy rain all day if just sort of rained off an on and steady, but not too hard.

I have gotten quite a bit of stitching done on this piece...

it is the Mary Beale "Sampler Wreath" - I am stitching it on 36ct "Heritage" from Silkweavers. I shifted all the DMC recommended floss colours to my own silks conversion - so I am using HDF, Bell Soie and NPI. It is stitching up pretty fast and I am super happy with the way it is turning out.

There you go sports fans. Thanks for stopping by, do come again!!

Take care,

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wrapping up the Week

GR&DF once again we have arrived at the end of the week - and can look forward to two glorious days of blissful laziness. That would be the case at our house if I didn't have my family coming in from Washington for Thanksgiving. I think there will a really full table at my house on Thursday with family, friends and the hounds. I love having everyone over and a big group is just the ticket for a great Holiday!!! We will finish up the cleaning and polishing and get started on the dinner prep this weekend so that there will not be a giant crush at the last minute.

It will be a total stay in couple of days as the rains are to start up today around 4pm - after I get home thankfully!! I hate it like nobodies business when I am out in the rain and on public transportation - it just bites!! Coming into work this morning there was lots of misty something falling - not fog/not rain/not pigeons - but something damp was upon my baldness!!

Last night I finished up my HOE Ornament Exchange - no snaps yet. So that goes out in this mornings mail. It has a long way to go so I wanted to get it into the mail a little earlier so that it could arrive by Christmas. I think it is totally cute and hope my partner likes what I have sent.

I think that about does it for today - have a great weekend!! Do come again!!

Take care,

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Only 1 More Day to Wait

GR&DF the weather has turned very cool here in the city. From last weekends balmy upper 70's to today's low 50's we are back on track for winter. Tomorrow we are supposed to have some thunderstorms with lots of rain - staying in with lots of stitching and getting numb butt sounds like a plan!!!

As you may recall or not I am a total nut case for the Harry Potter books - I have been ever since I picked the first one up in London a few years back - and the movies are very entertaining - some better than others but overall pretty good. Tomorrow we a given the gift of Part 1 Final Chapter - Deathly Hallows and with previews like.......

....it looks like the final two films will be winners and wrap the whole thing up very nicely!!

I am stitching away on an exchange so no snaps of that piece. I am also working on two other pieces, but have no snaps of either of them... and.. I had to order a piece of linen and some floss for a Christmas piece I wanted to stitch - I will get some snaps of that after I start. I have seen a few others out there stitching it up and just fell for how cute it is!

I also wanted to mention that Target is now carrying...

I couldn't believe it when I saw then there on the shelf. They are made and imported from Australia and taste great!! If you haven't tried them you are missing a delicious experience!!

Keeping it short today sports fans. Thanks for stopping by and for you kind comments!!

Take care,

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Movie Post

GR&DF not much going on - getting everything moving along and ready for Thanksgiving. Setting a menu, polishing up silver, getting down the stemware, going over linens.... and cleaning the house a little bit a time. I find if I break up the big jobs into smaller jobs they seem to get done faster and I am a much happier camper!!

I thought today I should talk about a few flicks.....

Lets start off with another in the ongoing series of Shirley Temple films - "Baby Take a Bow" - 1934 - starring Shirley Temple, James Dunn and Claire Trevor. This was a film that was a break in the all to familiar formula "Shirley" film. The story focused more on the adults and their story with some cute Shirley moments thrown in. If a bit creaky, overall a cute film and worth a look.

Now from reading this Blog and my film choices that I will watch almost any film and give most things a chance - so a while back I was listening to the radio and heard the Jeannie C Riley Song - "Harper Valley PTA" - 1968 - written by Tom T Hall. Here is a live performance of the song by Jeannie C Riley -

How great are her boots!! I remembered that there was a film made from the song and so I put it on my Netflix Queue - the DVD came over the weekend - "Harper Valley PTA" - 1978 - starring Barbara Eden and Nanette Fabray. Basically the film is all about revenge. It seems a bit dated and Barbara Eden might have been a bit long in the tooth to play the lead roll, but it was a fun flick with a few really funny moments.

The last film I wanted to mention is "The Great Caruso" - 1951 - starring Mario Lanza and Ann Blyth. I very nice film with some beautiful sets and costumes. The film tells in a bare bones Hollywood way the story of the great singer. Lanza is a competent actor with a gorgeous voice!! Watch this film for the music. Here is a clip of him singing "La Donna e Mobile" from Rigoletto - (the clip is a bit dark)

There you go sports fans -thanks again for stopping by, do come again.

Take care,

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fall Treats and Commenting on Comments

GR&DF (Gentle Readers and Dear Friends - for Susan)I do bow to your warm praise for my stitching and the wall of samplers. I do enjoy seeing them everyday hanging there. I kind of makes me a little crazy to know that there are so many more waiting to be framed and hung up - but that takes time and some cash!!

This weekend running around we picked up two of the harbingers of the festive Holiday season. Here is a snap....

There has to be at some point during the Fall a purchase of some Pumpkin Ice Cream - so delicious and in keeping with a harvest theme. My only question is does this count as a vegetable!?! :) The other real treat I look forward to is getting some lebkuchen - delicious German gingerbread. There are also the delicious pfeffernusse cookies to be had, I will get some of those later. I do love me some traditional treats and look forward to them every year!!!!

To some of the comments... I think the Waffle House is a place that you either love or you don't. I do love it and go every time I get the chance - my Mom doesn't care for the place and avoids it like the plague!!

Jackie mentioned putting sugar on grits. I have seen that done often, more often when I was waiting tables in Daytona Beach about a bazillion years ago. I worked in a Hotel restaurant on the Beach and I would often see northern tourists putting sugar on them. For me its just some salt and pepper and a pat of butter and its good to go. Talking about grits - I got the two bags/4 lbs of them at the Winn Dixie - Addie mention she couldn't find them, I would try there.

Riona wanted to know about the acorns that Ina sent me with my Fall exchange. The tops are natural acorn caps. I would think you could make them out of leather, but the natural caps with the acorn part for a cushion is so very nice.

Yes, Ariadne, I did get me some books - you know what a nut I am for the written word - and old books always get me going!! I picked up 5 books - a small book of the poem "Christmas Eve" by Robert Browning, the biography of Judy Holliday, "An Intimate Life Story," a 1949 first edition of "Nineteen Eighty-Four" by George Orwell, a 1959 first edition of "The Flame Tress of Thika" by Elspeth Huxley and a good copy of "The Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett (My old copy was just falling apart). I had to really restrain myself because I knew everything I bought would have to be shipped back to SF - I could have gotten many more books.

There you go sports fans - thank again for stopping by and for the kind comments!!! Do stop by again.

Take care,

Monday, November 15, 2010

Some Weekend Dancing

GR&DF I do thank you all for the kind comments on Fridays post. It was such a nice day at the Beach that the snaps were easy to get.

It was a great weekend for many dancing moments - as I started to channel Martha Graham - slipping into my tightest leotard outfit (with the help of liberal applications of Crisco!!) and I started into gyrations that frighten fish!!..... here are some snaperoos of the reasons for the dance and not of me in the outfit or of my gyrations!!




"The Garden Path" - by Sheepish Designs
36ct PTP Days Gone By (?), using my silk conversion
July 6, 2010 - November 11, 2010

I was so happy to have this piece finish - as I had held off finishing it to have a stitching piece to carry on my trip south. With that off my plate - I could do more dancing as I had another piece lined up to start.....

Another sampler, but which one?????

... and... for more dancing I got to pick up some pieces I had framed....

These three smaller pieces I have had for a long time and thought they might add to the sampler wall... two by La-D-Da and my Fall Squirrel - they look super de duper!! Ignore the fact that the wall needs a coat of paint - I just hate thinking about that as we rent this sucker, but we just might have to break down and slap some paint on the walls at some point!!

This is a better snap of the wall o'sampler.

I think that will wrap it up for today - I will get to some commenting on comments tomorrow.

I wanted to leave you with a reminder from the Christmas Chihuahua that there are only 40 more days until Christmas..... You can tell from the Lolly-nator's face that she was just loving this damn hat!!!

Do stop back again soon!!!

Tale care,

Friday, November 12, 2010

A Whole Bunch of Stuff

GR&DF thank you all for your kind comments on the previous post. It is nice to get away and see other things and places....but.... the best part of a getting away is the coming back home and getting back to a normal routine. I had all sorts of hope of getting a post yesterday, but Rico's appointment with the Doctor in the morning sort of threw everything out of whack. He is recovering just fine and will be in the walking boot for another few weeks and then go into some physical therapy and strength training.

Lets start off with the HOE Fall Exchange piece I received from Ina. It was waiting here for me and was a great way to start off getting back to work. Here is a snap -

She made me a super Fall pillow using a wonderful Freebie from Gazette94 - I just love it!! The variegated floss is so very "fallish" and the sweet acorn pin cushions are just darling. Thank you so much Ina!!! If you have not visited Gazette94 there are some really wonderful freebies and stitching pieces.

I also heard form my HOE partner that the piece I made for her had arrived and here is a snap of that piece -

I made a Pyn Keepe from a chart by Mary Garry - Seasonal Mementos - November. I used a piece of mystery over dyed linen and the recommended DMC floss. I have wanted to do this one up for the longest time and knew this was a perfect opportunity. The pumpkin fabric it is on I used for the backing material.

Now a trip report - there really is not too much to talk about. It was relaxing and wonderful to see my Mom. I got in on Wednesday and it was very warm/muggy/humid in Orlando . Wednesday and Thursday evening/nights there were some terrific rain storms over the Daytona area. The weather cooled way down after that and was just great. Cool and windy, just like here in San Francisco - I loved that!! On Friday afternoon we went downtown and set up for the Halifax Art Festival, my Mom was the Chairman of the Book Booth (where Museum Guild members donated books are sold) - it is a nice money maker for the organization and the cost to run it is minimal. Then on Saturday and Sunday we where there all day long selling books. I did get a chance to walk around the Festival a couple of times - there was some really spectacular pieces being shown!!

I did get to Hobby Lobby - we don't have one out here so a visit was on my list!! I ate a bunch of delicious Dustin's BBQ!! I got some Angell and Phelps dark chocolate and some Tupelo Honey to bring back. One of the places I always visit when home or near one....

The love affair with Waffle House is still strong - and instead of my usual pecan waffle's I opted for for a regular breakfast....

...toasted biscuit, grits, sausage, eggs and some good old WH coffee!! Now you just can't beat that with a stick!!! One other thing I stopped off for and is on its way to me in my FedEx box of treats is 4 pounds of grits!! Not just any grits but Dixie Lilly grits. That is the one thing I really miss not being able to get out here - are Dixie Lilly products.

Even though I am not a beach person I did make it to the beach - it was such a lovely day...

I drove a little north of the Granada approach and parked for free in a small Beach parking lot and walked onto the Beach. These are the rules.....

here is the walkway....

it was beautifully calm and the tide was turning and going out. So there were lots of birds looking for snacks....

and some really great ripply lines in the sand....

while I was there a flock of pelicans flew by.... and that was the most that happened. There were about 4 other people that walked by so the whole beach was deserted and mine, a great relaxing time. I rolled up my pants and waded out a bit and the water was on the cool side.

There you go - the trip was relaxing and a nice break!!

I think that about wraps it up for today sports fans. i am slowly trying top work my way through all the Blog Posts I missed. Thanks for stopping by and do stop by again!!

Take care,

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Back from Florida

GR&DF I am back from my visit to the Sunshine state. It was a nice and almost relaxing break before the Holidays. Today will be a very short post as I have come back to piles of stuff on my desk.

Just wanted to stop in and let you in on a few thoughts..... 1) I missed my little Bit o'Blog, 2) Florida has some good points and 3) If you can't lift that heavy bag your dragging onto the overcrowded plane into the overhead bin then you should check that sucker!!!!

Here is a snap from my trip......

Thanks for stopping by!!

Take care,

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Back on the 10th

GR&DF this will be a final post for a bit - as today is my last day here in SF - I am going to visit my Mom in Florida. The Super Shuttle is picking me up at tomorrow morning at about 3:30 am to catch my ungodly early flight at 5:45am. Flying West to East is always like that - leave early arrive late. It should be a nice visit - the weather is warmer than usual for this time of year and the Halifax Art Festival is this weekend. My Mom has been involved with the Festival for about 20+ years - and I have been told that I have been signed up to "help" during the Festival - Woo-Hoo lucky me!!

Marchann mentioned the linen colour of my Shores piece - it is the recommended colour - but the snap in yesterday post is a bit more yellow than the actual piece. I am really happy with the linen colour and now so very happy I went with the recommendation. Christine mentioned square 3 and how it looks like the mermaid is buried in the ground - how funny is that!! I totally agree - and found myself laughing out loud at the comment!!!! regarding the film I do not think you will be disappointed in "Agora" - by using Netflix I have found many flicks that I have never heard of and really liked. I do not think I would have ever seen "Agora" if it hadn't been for Netflix. I don't think it was ever released in the US - it was a Netflix recommendation... I do like how they have recommendations of films. I think my Queue is at about 370 or so films waiting to be seen, many from the site recommending different films and I always say "There is always something to see."

Jane asked my opinion about a stitching frame - I really don't have one - I don't use a stand frame to stitch on. In the past I have used different hoops and scroll bars, but for the longest time I have only been using Q-snaps. Since I can only use a single snap I only have the 8 inch size and I just move it around as I stitch. I have thought about getting another size, but the 8 inch works for me. I thought about a standing frame, but just couldn't justify spending the money on something that might not work for me - I am sorry to be of no real help - lots of stitchers use frames - I would guess there are lots of opinions about out there about stitching frames.... anyone want to share what is good and bad about a stitching frame????? If you use a frame what kind is it?? What would your change about it??

Last night the flicker was one I have had on my Netflix queue for a very long time. Sometimes a title is out and the wait to see it can be long - the film I have been waiting to see was "David Copperfield" - 1999 - starring - Emilia Fox, Daniel Radcliffe, Maggie Smith, Zoe Wanamaker, Ian McKellen, Bob Hoskins and Ciaran McMenamin. This was another top notch BBC production that was just about perfect. Great casting, sets and costumes. I love me some Dickens - and if you've not seen this version you should as it is a two part treat!!

There you go sports fans - thank you again for stopping by for a few moments. I'll be back in a about a week.

Take care,

Monday, November 1, 2010

A Cool Dry Monday

GR&DF I am overwhelmed by your kind thoughts and comments regarding Friday's post. I loved reading them this morning. Before posting I usually read through the previous posts comments, and take notes about what I will "talk" about in the days post. All I can say is a big thank you all. Margaret had a question and I did have a couple of emails about my camera. Yes, I do try and carry it everywhere I go. You just never know when there will be something interesting or unusual to get a snap of. More than once I have forgotten the camera at home and of course I needed it for a picture of something. Most of the time it just sits in my bag without ever coming out, but I do like knowing its there, just in case. My camera is an older one - a Canon PowerShot A550 7.1 mp. I am really comfortable with it, but an seriously contemplating upgrading- more MP and a bit smaller.

This weekend was a very low key one, with Rico still recouping and tons of rain on Saturday. I got out of the house for a little while and Dale and I went to breakfast. We got a to a single Estate Sale, but I didn't find anything at all that I wanted/needed - so I came home empty handed.

On the stitching front I finished up my HOE Fall Exchange and that will go into the mail this morning and off to a new home. I also worked on a couple of other pieces. Here is a snap of the piece I can show - an update on Shores -

After I finished all the white stitching I moved on to Block 4's border. I am leaving the fill around the mermaid for the flight to Florida on Wednesday - no count stitching is about all I can muster on an airplane. I think that Shores is stitching up very fast or faster than Village.... I wonder why??

I wanted to mention a flick I saw this weekend - "Agora" - 2009 - starring Rachel Weisz, Max Minghella, Oscar Isaac, Rupert Evans. The story of the last years of the brilliant philosopher / mathematician / astrologer Hypatia. A really beautiful film set in 4th century Alexandria, Egypt. It is a love story and story of religious fanaticism - out with the old and in with the new - a good reason to see the film is to watch Rachel Weisz's performance - she is riveting when on screen - at about 2 hours the time flies. Directed by Alejandro Amenabar it is a visually gorgeous film with some great acting.

I think that about wraps it up for today. Thanks for stopping by, do come again!!

Tale care,

Let's Stick to the 1840's

 Gentle Friends, I finished up Miss Sarah Barker 1840 here's an old snaperooo of how she looks... "Sarah Barker 1840"  from Ne...