Sunday, December 27, 2009

for the very last time....

in the year 2009...we are posting a little blog bit here - we are shutting down the computers tomorrow morning's going to be a very busy day tomorrow...way too much to do this week and way too little time to do it all in...but i have the utmost of confidence that it will all go according to "somebody's" plan (although i'm not sure which plan that is)...and that we come will out the other end of this move with most of our brains left in our heads...

this is certainly not something i had planned on doing anytime soon.  it's been less than 2 years since the last one...and here we are again...but we had absolutely no choice this time - a leaky and contaminated building and an owner who didn't see that there was anything the matter with any of that...and goes and goes and goes. 

in the interim - we have done this in 2.5 weeks instead of 2.5 months like the last time and none of us has any idea where anything is except it's "in a box" somewhere...but it will be over sooner than later and we can get back to doing what we love to do best.

keep good thoughts - have a great new year...and if this doesn't kill us - it hopefully will make us stronger :)  HAPPY NEW YEAR.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

short, sweet and very much to the point

i have always been one to believe in "signs"  and it sort of doesn't matter much to me where those signs come from...

it's been a rough couple of months around here with a lot of decisions to be made, lots of soul searching, lots of questions - to the point that i generally end up answering myself - and i have these very long and drawn out conversations with myself and a very dear friend who always listens even if she isn't physically sitting in the passenger's seat  -  i have these conversations on the way into the shop and on the way home from the shop...and sometimes (if i don't think the girls are listening) - i have the conversations while i'm working in the back room here...

so...back to signs.  yesterday was sort of a watershed day - and lots of decisions were made  (all for the good).  i pulled out onto oakdale avenue this morning coming in.  streets were dry, it had not rained - even though we are expecting it today maybe - and there was the most BRILLIANT rainbow over the field to the west.  by the time i had gotten to briggsmore - there was a second rainbow right next to the first rainbow...a little bit less BRILLIANT but another  rainbow - no doubt.

i knew i had received a sign...and said my thanks and dedicated the first rainbow to a good friend who is having a third angioplasty in six months today and also to a good friend in new york who is waiting for some results...  and i kept the 2nd rainbow for us...and said my most appreciative thanks for those two rainbows...

by then...i was at the lake - and you guessed it - the goosers are back!!!  silly birds...they are with us thru the spring i'm sure...good grits in that lake...why leave???  and good scratchings for bugs and grubs in the field...

am out of here - more on rainbows a little bit later this week...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

baby it's cold outside

hard to imagine in this valley - where it can top 110 degrees in the summer time without even a blink of an eye...we had 24 degrees yesterday morning when i came in and the shop was 44 degrees INSIDE...and now it's all headed east and we are supposed to get more tomorrow.  it's very clear outside and the clearer it is the colder it gets.

driving thru the orchards yesterday morning - all the unpruned peach trees looked like white crystal and the unpruned grapevines were equally as beautiful.  i took a couple of photos when i got to the shop - wished i had been able to get the trees and the grapevines  - but the camera was here on my desk - and i thought i would share california's central valley version of 'snow' - but this is pretty cold for us - and when you have no clothing warm enough and no coats warm enough...this can be pretty bitter.  they got mountains of snow in the foothills of the sierra - enough to call a snow day for the kids yesterday...unheard of and maybe this will be the end of this drought we've had for about 4-5 years.  we can only hope as we need the snowpack so badly.

annie, kay and i have been stuffing mama mia and the babes and first cousin merlin with canned cat food as well as yet another 20 pound bag of dry - i don't know where they go at night...but i can only hope to put enough food in their bellys to keep their little internal furnances stoked...and the vet appt. for the babes for next week is the first thing on the agenda as soon as the vet's office opens this morning. 

so...checking in from the artic-like central, baby - it's very cold outside.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

cranky cranky cranky

is it me??  i don't think so???  lordy lordy the world is quite a cranky place.  if you don't do your job correctly or you don't make the effort to do your job correctly or you're just plain lazy or you just don't give a flip - how is it that it always becomes the other person's fault? 

am just getting very sick and tired of those who suffer from all the above symptoms and thus end up making the rest of our lives a living hell but getting thoroughly pissed off if we dare comment or ask "how come" they are behaving like this.

trying to remain positive...let a lot of things slide right off my back...but i'm telling you - it's getting tougher and tougher to "take it all in stride" and take the high road or turn the other cheek.  what happens when we all run out of "cheeks" since any given person only has four of those? 

makes me sad that there is no ownership, no responsibility taken, no apologies made - just laying down blame for all the boo-boos at somebody else's feet and slinking away in hopes that nobody will ask "how come".

little bit of ranting going on here i'm afraid...but it's really true and it's getting worse instead of getting any better and it just makes everything so much more of a struggle and a strain...when it really shouldn't be that way.

guess i'm a little bit cranky too - but, it's december 1st and it's 24 more days until christmas and then it will be gone for yet another year.  i got our little tree almost decorated - we're going for 2 feet and sparkley this year instead of 9 feet of crystal and white and i decorated the front doors last night with giant ornament balls in white and silver and lots of curly ribbon in black, white, silver and looks quite pretty actually - hanging on the red doors and it didn't take long at's very twinkly.....  can actually make door hangings while on the phone...get the last of the little ornaments hung on the sparkle tree and the mantle in the family room decorated and that will be the end of it for this year...way too much going on...but wait...need to hang the dogger socks and then we'll be done.

first an out of state trip starting tomorrow to virginia and then home on the 7th and then the holidays will officially start around here...and a whole lot of other interesting things too.

off to do an update - need, need to get that done ;)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

turkeys...and i don't mean the ones that gobble

have ya ever just had days where you wonder what the hell people are thinking ... or not thinking as the case may be??? love a duck ... sometimes i just wonder where their brains are!!! and then i quietly think ... maybe it's just me but by the time i get to the end of that thought i realize that no, it isn't just me ... it's that people just don't seem to be thinking much past "it's all about me" these days.

i was driving home the other night making a list in my head of all the things that have driven me absolutely nutso over the last week or two ... by the time i had been in car for 1.5 miles heading home, the list was so long i couldn't remember it all and since we can't "cell" and drive at the same time here in california i couldn't even turn on the "task" part of the phone to write them all down ...
anyway ... that's enough of that ... i have had a ton of requests for pictures of mama mia and the babes ... and they have cooperated most graciously this afternoon. so ... here is part of the elegant stitch brood (the outside contingent) wishing you a very, very happy turkey day weekend. \

this is "chessie" - who we thought was chessie ... but is really "chesterfield" when you get up close and he let me hold him last night.  he is kay's favorite babe ... even now that she knows he is a he and not a little female . he is quite cheeky and will walk right in the back door if you give him any encouragement at all.

this is mama mia ... she is quite tame and loves all of us ... and we love her. she is very calm and a fierce mama ... and her tummy has healed quite well and the hair is starting to grow back .

this is frankie (ee) - you see - we're not quite sure because frankie (ee) won't get close enough for us to pick up ... obviously a totally different daddy from chesterfield ... kind of a siamese gone a little wonky:)

this is eggs ... and i don't even know how i got this picture. the most frightened cat i have ever met. we named her "eggs" because of her scrambled colors and also her personality ... she does a lot of hiding under my car ... and she blends right in on the other side of the fence amongst the browning stinging nettles and dried out weeds. she is quite plump ... so somehow she's getting her fair share of the food.

last but not least...this is merlin.  i think he is a cousin of the babes...because he is about six months older.  we don't know what flavor this pretty meow is...because - the name says it one minute and poof - gone in the blink of an eye.  merlin (or merlene) is hanging pretty close to the babes these days...and was quite out of sorts when the babes and mama mia were spending a couple of nights in the unit next door while mama was recovering from her surgery.  this one is going to be the toughest to catch (if we can) and this one is our priority after we get the babes in for their surgeries right after i get back from williamsburg the 2nd week of december.

so...there is my herd of kitty meows.  there are three more - the 2 daddies and a solid black one with yellow eyes...but we rarely see them - usually in the dark when everybody has gone home...they come and see if there is any food left in the dishes outside the back door.

have a wonderful, safe, happy and terrific turkey day - even if you have ham (like annie) or a peanut butter and jelly's all good.  i have many things to be thankful for and the upcoming year is going to present some major challenges and some incredible interesting changes around here and i am looking forward to all of them with a little fright, much anticipation and great hope for the amazing things we are going to do.  ENJOY!!!  it's all good!!!!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

some silliness and other sunday stuff...

the geese are staying...despite silly rumors to the contrary - i came in this morning for multiparted chores...and they were in the field...about fifty of them...any goose who thinks that modesto in the winter is better than mexico or parts south and warm - needs their collective heads examined...but what's the alternative.

other news - no football game today because we played on thursday we're taking the doggers on an outing to pet smart...that should be soon as i finish this and get home...then tomorrow we have dogger day spa (and they desperately need it) so i'll work all day down here until it's time to go get them about 2:00 ish.

last but not least....mama and the babes are now out enjoying the sunshine after their period of "lock-up".  mama is recovered from her surgery and is enjoying a bath and a warm spot in the flowerbed...the babes are out and about as only babes can be on a warm fall morning...and we got permission yesterday that project X will fund the babe's excess neutering fees so sometime around christmas - we're going to do the whole thing again and take all three of them in...

we've named them:  mama mia, chessie (because she looks like linda's chessie cat); frankie or frankee depending on the flavor (which we don't know right now) and eggs - because she is such a scrambled up calico.  eggs couldn't find her way outside this morning...i think she's just a little bit scrambled - not only in colors of her fur - but also her personality...but it's all good now.

enjoy your sunday...i'm off to do an update and then get home where the stacks are taller than the ones here in the shop.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

mama kitty and the surgical wonders of modern medicine

well...mama kitty and i made a trip to see dr. mike this morning about 7:15.  don't ask me how - i don't know - luck of the kitty gods i believe - but yesterday morning...there they all were - waiting for breakfast and i decided to see if i could get them into the spare unit so the babes would be a little calmer if they had been there overnight.  two huge plates of canned food convinced mama and the three little ones that inside the spare unit was the best place to be...even the really scardy -  truly so ugly she's cute - calico who scares herself most mornings...into the unit they went...and as they are slurping down the good comes kay, annie and i with the litter boxes, the water and the blankies and when we got everything settled in - bam the door got closed behind us and mama and the babes were safe and sound. 

this morning went off without a hitch - i filled up food dishes (having taken away all water and yummies last night so mama wouldn't eat them), left them on the sidewalk - took the carrier in - and there was mama - into the carrier and then the food came in and the babes were munching quietly away while i took mama out the front door.  into the car we went - two tiny meows in protest all the way to riverbank and she's there now... 

the babes are safe in their giant playpen of a room while mama is gone...and mama will be home tomorrow sometime after morning rounds...and we're going to keep her quiet for a couple of days and then let everybody go...and hopefully she will continue to visit us and hopefully we'll be able to snag the babes when it's time and get them in to see dr. mike too!!!

and so is the saga of just plain luck, a little magic and somebody upstairs being on our side as we try to catch mama and the babes!!!  it's a done deal and she will be much happier and healthier without any more "kids" and the feral population of modesto will have just a little bit of a hitch and we will be very proud that we helped in a small way. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

geese are back and it's blowing like a stinker here

seems tuesdays are the day to howl...two weeks ago on a tuesday we nearly drowned and today we are nearly blown away with 45-50 mph winds - it always astounds me how much "junk" is blown around and how it always ends up (the trash) right outside my shop front door.  made two trips to the dumpster already with paper, boxes, trash, cups, plastic bags, uggy stuff - gave up - will do it all again tomorrow - hopefully it is going to stop blowing by then.  no rain - just huge wind.

the geese have come back again to the lake by the house - silly things - i think they might be staying here this winter - i love seeing them in the morning.  the walnuts are in harvest right now - have to get at least two pounds and put them away - they are so much easier to shell when they are a year old - make wonderful little pincushions if you polish the shell on the outside - but if you try to hull them fresh - the shell just shatters and you have lots of good walnut meat but lousy pincushion shells.

mama kitty and the babes are on their 2nd giant bag of kitty chow - we opened it this morning and this is the week to catch everybody - keep the babes safe in the unit next door while mama is off for surgery overnight...have to keep the babes safe - would never forgive myself if something happened to the little ones while i took mama away to the doctor.  we have a trap here but i actually think that we can lure them into the other unit...mama brings all of them to the back door in the morning if i don't get breakfast out the door quick enough (and two seconds is way too long as far as the family is concerned).

heading out to do baby present shopping - tomorrow evening have to run an errand over at cost plus and then i have to put my head down here and not look up for at least 17 days or i will never get caught up again. 

isn't exciting - halloween is just around the corner - we get zillions of little ones - they have a big party at the church just around the corner from us - and then everybody heads out - i think we are going to have bunches this year because it's saturday night...the doggers will be crazy with the doorbell ringing...rushing to answer it...they will probably give up after about 45 minutes of it...or i can just put the gate up and keep them in the family room...  they can watch the new toyota commercial with the squeekie toy and the liver spotted hunting dog that is loose - as soon as that commercial starts "squeeking" - off they go down the front hall looking for the toy...every single time the commercial comes on...i could say something about bright crayons in the box...but i will just leave it to your imagination.  at least they smell good - spa day yesterday - it lasts about 24 hours and then it's all done until the next time.  heading - enjoy the evening and the week - have a couple of pictures to take and post...just need to find that extra 3 minutes in the day...where does the time go?  does it go faster the older we get - yep - i think i have found the answer to the age-old question.

later to all.....

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

rain...rain...rain...and some more rain...

it started about 3 this morning - and it has literally not stopped and is continuing.  not seen rain in modesto like this since we moved here almost 10 years ago.  am sort of used to being a duck when we lived in marin - it rained all the time there in the winter - average rainfall was somewhere around 45 inches and we moved to modesto - 12.5 inches a year.  everytime somebody warns of doom and gloom and a giant storm that is going to eat us alive - we all quietly snore and it passes right over us.  NOT THIS TIME.  we have flooded streets, it hasn't stopped - every single window and door on the south side of our shop is leaking and i mean leaking a lot and bruce has already been down with the auxilliary load of towels when we have replaced twice and taken the soggy ones home to spin in the washer and throw into the dryer.  it just keeps on coming.  thankfully we're not leaking from the roof - just all the windows and it's seeping in between the window frames and the floors...somehow i don't think anybody chalked anything in this building...certainly not the seven foot windows - why would you need to do that??? 

mama kitty and babes have taken to the high ground somewhere - we have new food dishes in the sink ready for them tomorrow morning - their dishes have blown to the north somewhere...i hope they are safe and dry - they have to be hungry.  the spay/neuter place called yesterday and as soon as retreat is over we are going to trap mama and take her in to be spayed...the babes can't go until they are about 4 months old - hopefully we'll be able to tame them and make it a little easier.  annie has a trap so mama is our main concern before she gets herself into trouble again!!

anyway - didnot is fat and sassy and warm and dry in her shop (with the leaky doors and windows) and is quite happy...but i hear a lull in the rain so maybe i'll scamper now while i can and come in early again tomorrow and clean up the mess.  we are so trying to get ready for retreat and we are having such a tough time of needs to stop raining now please!!!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

and where or where have i been???

if i knew the answer to that - life would be good.  i'm tired - it has been non-stop for well over two weeks now - i meet myself coming in the door and heading back out - but we're good here - just moving and shoving and covering and sweeping and dusting and putting away and filling orders and generally getting ready for our retreat next weekend - it's all good...just a tad overwhelming sometimes. 

getting ready to do an update - i think i forgot how to do that too - it's just a bugger getting old...but the alternative stinks so i'll just watch a few more gray hairs pop out and be grateful.  turned cold here - literally a 25 degree drop overnight - we are definitely having fall and it's so nice - i just love it.

mama kitty and the 3 babes are good and eating me out of house and home.  need to make a decision about catching and neuturing - scares me to death because of the california law that if they are found positive for hiv or other kitty things - they have to be put down...i need to talk to bruce about it seriously - but i just can't have mama having any more kittens or have the kittens having kittens...that isn't a responsible thing to do...especially since i'm feeding them...where do the ethics lie in a case like this???  i just don't know.  in the meantime - we are finding places to tuck all our stuff in the backroom so people don't kill themselves on it next weekend.

more later - this was just an "after lunch yap" before i pick up the broom and dustmop again...but annie and kay tell me it's definitely looking better so there is hope...i will just believe there is hope!!!
back later...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

mama kitty and a good pencil

i honestly don't know where the last week has gone - if you held a gun to my head...and you all know the rest of that story.  i can't believe it's been a week today that annie and i climbed on a plane to st. louis - it seems a million years ago and i feel like i haven't checked in with anybody - just had my head in the computer or printing or pulling orders...but i've been doing some thinking back and forth and in the early and late hours of the morning and evening as i come in and head out...stupid thinking actually because i'm tired and when i get tired i think like a stupid head.

anyway - for all of you who have been following either this blog or the one that we do somewhat weekly on the web site - remember mama kitty from the old store?  well, we have a new mama kitty at this store.  she (and her current brood) live on the other side of the now defunct railroad tracks over our side fence...she is a beautiful pale gray stripe and 1 baby looks just like her and another one has longer fur and the 3rd one has a bit of siamese in the genetic woodpile.  mama is quite tame and lets us pet her...and we give her water and some of didnot's dry food in big bowls.  i just went out and checked - and there she was - so family is now enjoying their second meal of the day...and the babies are very beautiful but just a little bit bashful.

it makes it feel like a real shop again - especially since we had the black mama kitty at the other shop by the dumpster for a very long time - i always felt so bad for her - she was very hungry when she found us - and when it was all over and done - she adopted a family down the street who provided food and a warm place to sleep and so it all worked out in the end.  we almost felt that we kept her going until somebody came to offer her a forever home - we were just that little boost she needed to make it thru the rough spot.

the other thing i was thinking about is pencils - have ya ever just found the bestest pencil in the world...but you really didn't want to use it because then it would be all used up and you wouldn't have it anymore?  isn't it just weird where the brain goes.  i found a BOX of that kind of pencil...and i'm going to target to buy at least 4 more boxes of them before they go away.  there is truly nothing more satisfying than a good pencil...and i had forgotten that...i was having a love affair with embassy suite pens...brought a bunch home from market - but i also love a good pencil!!!
i'm very tired and making no sense - full moon tonight - the air is crisp at night now - fall is truly in the air...THANK HEAVENS!!!  enjoy your evening...later!!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

market and other insanity

and cell phone in hand - i'm ready.  everything packed, all counted, bins loaded, suitcases packed...and the phone - which is supposed to have a virtual keyboard (but only when it feels like it) decides to act up once again.  30 days to exchange it - 30 days is next wednesday.  everytime it misbehaves i threaten to take it back to the store.  everytime i threaten - it shows me the horizontal  virtual keyboard.  today i had had enough - had put the phone into time out about 4 times and decided enough was enough.  all the way across town and traded in the phone - he broke the hard case section that goes on the back of my phone - they didn't have any more.  he was supposed to transfer everything over - guess what - somewhere my calendar got lost so i have to recreate that. 

have to remember how to set all of the "stuff" up again because they no longer give out little booklets that you can sit and read - nope - you get a cd and you get to print out the 205 pages of instructions as to how to work your phone...problem is - that it prints right in the middle of the page in the tinest writing you could imagine. i am - trying to charge the new phone with the empty calendar and no music in it - because even though he seemed to have switched over the memory card - remember - i have to get out the 205 pages to figure out where the flipping music actually is and low and behold - i can't get a horizontal virtual keyboard (see the beginning of this rant).  now i call the store - i get "him" on the phone and his answer to the questions i ask is "well, maybe that's how the phone is supposed to work".  WRONG ANSWER.  he was with a client at the moment and i told him he really didn't want to see my face down there again and i am now waiting for him to call me back and at the same time, writing this and e-mailing with my dearest friend judy bielec in texas - she's trying to calm me down...

am i ready for market - i was until about 2 hours ago.  i actually went and had him destroy my phone, get a new flat iron, get gas in my car and be back in less than an hour - the girls were very impressed...but i still don't have a virtual horizontal keyboard...and he also lost the photo of daisy buchanan when she was a little girl...that was my wallpaper!!

kay has gone off to get us "happy meals" from micky d's...and it probably won't help - but there is nothing like a disgusting french fry to make me feel better.

off to accomplish the rest of my "here" lists before i go home and set the alarm for 5:00 a.m. tomorrow morning.

see you all when we get back...grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr - i hate new cell phones :)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

isn't it amazing...

what can be done with a plain old spool of mettler 50/3 cotton thread and a straw needle?
just imagine what can be done with a spool of silk machine thread you can buy at the local fabric store.  it's truly a wonder.  top was stitched on 40 count over two, second row was 40 count over one and the third piece is 45 count over two.  yep, that's a #11 straw needle.  i'm off to find a spool  of weeks dye works quilting cotton...that will be fun to work with and it's overdyed so i'll get some terrific color play :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

we call this place "dirtville"

not even anything as remotely charming as "smallsville" - just plain old dirtville.  it rained/thundered/lighteninged over the weekend - totally unheard of the middle of september - and all that accomplished was to strike terror in the heart of poor nicky who absolutely hates anything that goes boom - thunder or fireworks - it makes no nevermind to him - if it booms - he's gone.

mud on the car (dirt/dust and water equals mud) and shakey dogs is not my idea of a good time but that's what we had.  then, tuesday - just for fun - we had both AC and furnace units replaced in our home - they even changed out the wall return in the family room - everything is all brand new - including the return and the thermostats and how anybody could possibly get a footprint (boot print) on the wall about 30 feet up in the family room is beyond me - but guess what - they did.  we won't even discuss the attic opening which is in the master bedroom closet...i do love painting walls - i really do - it could be my life's work if i accepted that job.

we are truly bustling around here getting ready for market next week - we leave on thursday morning at o'dark hundred - annie will be a vegetable until we are almost to the airport and then magically pop alive as i drop kick her to the curb with all the luggage and i go park the car.  we've been doing this for so long together that we don't even have to talk...and if we do - usually it's in shorthand - and i never have to worry about my back - she's always there to cover despite the insanity before we leave i know that all will go smoothly because my annie is there guiding me thru the minefields.

i have at least 2 million more things to get done before leaving...and bruce is heading to orange county on monday evening and gets home about 9 on wednesday night and the alarm goes off at 5 on thursday morning so it's going to be yet another fun filled week and we probably won't hit any sort of calm for at least three weeks after we get back and then's retreat weekend...but it's all terrific.

and...with all this stuff that takes hours to accomplish  and there is nothing to do but think while doing it all - i have figured out next year's breast cancer piece to be released in mid-september and the designer is all on board and we are just way too excited - i love working with generous, kind and gracious people - they make it so easy to be creative and do good things - just their kindness buoys me along and we've had some amazing designers help us over the years...jackie du plessis, judy bielec, alma allen, barb adams and belinda karls-nace - i am indeed a lucky person to have these people be my friends...i am truly blessed.

so...because i've been here before six thirty every morning this week and because i have a pile of things sitting at home that need to get done before i head for st. louis next week - i'm going to head home - after i finish putting some kits together - try and figure out which lists i want to ignore and which i need to pay serious attention to and see if there is something on the television that will keep me entertained until i fall over. 

enjoy your evening...sleep tight and check back here again before i leave for market - there could be some pretty fun stuff -  just never know what might happen around here :)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

boomers abound

good morning...we are having one of those wretchedly humid days - there's a hurricane off some coast somewhere and it is thick and gray and nasty and my husband tells me this is the last day of it and i hope he's right.

thunder and dry lightening strikes on the way in this morning...but, if it does rain - it will split the walnuts and they can start harvesting those.  the dust and dirt is impossible right now...almond harvest is in full production and everything - including all living and breathing things - have a thin (or thick depending on location) layer of dust on them.  the horizon is brown and the only way to see blue sky is to look straight up!!!  driving thru it is equally fun - dust so thick that they put up warning signs as you enter the brown cloud (with all the windows up thank you) and emerge on the other's just all quite amazing.  shaking first then sucking them up with giant machines...there is no hiding from it :)

maybe if we had a little rain it would "settle the dust" or make mud on my car...who knows.

kay and i are working today - trying to get everything in order for shipping next week - it's going to be very busy - and annie is off making the final preparations for a beer pong party that four couples host as a fund raiser for the church.  beer pong party starts at two this afternoon and the designated drivers are all lined up.

think i'd be smart to get off this computer and hit the save button on everything - rather be safe than so terribly sorry.  have a great saturday - i'm gone ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Friday, September 11, 2009

good day - but be alert at dusk!!!

it seems my little town here in the central valley is right on the migratory flight line between north and south.  the canadian geese have finally headed down south - now that the hurricane on the mexico penninsula is over, the flying will not be quite so bumpy - and fast on their little geese heels came the starlings.  we had the scouts arrive here about two weeks ago...and last night...the first wave of the little darlings appeared enmasse.  now, don't get me wrong, i love birds.  we have some of the dumbest doves i have ever seen in this town.  we actually rescue them all the time - lots of nests in our arbor at home - and we finally convinced them that nesting in the feeders in the trees was not such a good idea - especially when it was time for birdie flight school and most especially when there are at least five kitties watching and praying for that event, but i digress (as usual).

so, back to the starlings.  driving home last night after an errand stop, it's just dusk.  i get to the corner of floyd & oakdale.  everything is good until i look up at the utility wires and there they are!!!!
this is a farming valley - we have a canel system for water that is amazing - we also use that water movement thru the canels to produce our electricity - because of that - there are lots of utility poles and lots of utility wires.  at this particular street corner there are utility wires 4 deep on the poles.  4 deep utility wires means 4 deep starlings and thousands of them.  so many infact that they buckle the wires under all the weight and the utility wires get a sad case of the droops. 

moral of this story...never drive thru 2 million starlings with your moon roof open.  i will leave the rest to your very active imaginations :)  it could have gotten far uglier than it actually was!!!

have a very great weekend.  bruce tells me this is our last very hot day - i'm hoping he's right - am looking for cooler days - we're all just a little tired of the heat by now.  had a conversation with jean lea at attic last week - she thinks we all get just a little bit wonky this time of year - our brains have been fried and our bodies are telling us that it should be getting cooler and we continue to hope for just a little bit cooler days.  i think this year modesto & mesa, arizona kind of stayed in tandem with the temps...

off to do update and try and clear off some more rubble - my life's work it seems!!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

okay - we give up

this is how it looks from our viewpoint today :)  anybody care to join us?

Friday, September 4, 2009

full moon and purple things in texas

it's a full harvest moon here tonight - just beyond big and beautiful but it is definitely making the "tidal" patterns in people's brains just a little bit weird today - whew - really quite something and yet - isn't it always just too weird on the friday before a long weekend?  i think the answer to that is yes.  i think the magic moon is going to be about the same tonight for all of us above the earth's belt - and i can hardly wait until it gets dark. 

still hot - not so humid today thank heavens - which will make it a little bit easier this weekend but they have already started shaking those almond trees and the dirt and dust in the air is going to get worse before it gets any better.

a friend in texas sent me a gorgeous picture of thistles that she took this afternoon - thought i would share - all i can take pictures of is dusty and dirty leaves at the moment - everything is covered in a disgusting brown yuck!!!  we actually have "things" growing on the tiles of our roof at home - that's how much dirt flies thru the air at harvest...we won't go into what grows in the gutters...or the need to hose them out because you can grow corn in them if you don't clean them. 

have to get the chimney sweep out to clean the fireplace - it's always easier before it gets cold - and then we are prepared at a moment's notice to light a fire if the mood strikes.

thanks to ginny for these beautiful purple things...

Thursday, September 3, 2009

and just because

they can - the geese are back - all of them - munching in the field last night.  silly geese - i guess they decided against heading south with the hurricane in cabo making flying kind of bad at the moment!!

am working on a wonderful knitted noro blanket with kureyon wool.  my problem is that it's a "big" row - and it takes a bit to get across and last night i was so tired that my eyes started to cross - didn't have to rip - but could have gotten ugly.  am taking one of these to europe next year in the spring - won't have to pack a coat...or so i'm hoping.  4 balls down - 8 to go...and then a second one with more muted colors.

have a ton of stitching to get done too - am doing something for a designer that just is taking me way longer than i suspected...but it's very beautiful and i hope she will be patient with me - and it's beautiful pink on brown linen - very chic!!

twitter is just amazing - it really is...annie is going to help me with my new phone so i can get the tweets there - but it is quite amazing.  mr. bear has my old phone (blackberry) and is having fun learning how to ride that beastie.  daisy buchanan and the boys keep sending him text messages - he can actually get to them and read them...but has informed me he needs a "poker" to send anything back because his fingers are just too big for the keypad.
i think some "real" glasses might help the cause too - but i believe that is like barking in hurricane force winds - nobody can hear me :)

enjoy your day - in early (6:25 again) but i plan on moving at least three mountains today.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

ain't it just amazing

how people re-invent themselves into some other kind of creature - just amazes me all the time and makes me wonder how long the charade can possibly last - isn't it hard to pretend to be something you're not?  don't you forget "which" person you are on any particular day?  just questions - don't expect answers to them but it truly can be confusing...
fires are really bad here - the valley is just a giant smoke bowl - a humid and stinking smoke bowl - the hurricane off of cabo is creating the overcast and the fires burning in yosemite, southern california and east of sacramento are just creating smoke filled skies - and this is just the beginning of the fire season here on the west coast and i think fires terrify me more than anything - just because they are so terribly final.  have ridden out a number of earthquakes when we lived in the bay area - did the s.f. earthquake 40 floors up and swayed 15 feet each side of center but fires - they just terrify me beyond all else.

have added a few more favorite spots on the right side of this blog - and will continue to add more.  long day - am punching thru 12 hours so far down here - but we are incredibly busy and the lists just grow continually longer and more complex.  think i'll head home - see the doggers, pet the kitties and settle in for the evening...with the air on - it's over 100 out there right now. 

have a good evening!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

and you all thought i was kidding...

but...i actually did some changing on the blog...and i think i'm going to change it just a little so it isn't just an extension of the shop - but in fact more of an extension of me - whatever that means.

this blogging is really quite interesting actually. who would have ever thought - and here - we have all spent thousands of dollars learning how to use web sites and now we have this wonderful invention called blogging - truly an amazing invention.

i have to tell you - this has been just the weirdest damn week i have ever spent.  had a wonderful weekend in sacramento actually taking a class instead of hosting one...great class, great teacher, great weekend.  learned quite a bit and make a few stops at a quilt shop, a beading shop (two of those actually) and a great knit shop up in rocklin, ca.  and of course, i had to purchase a few just wouldn't have been the same...  got home late sunday evening, hit the bricks running on monday and for the life of me - i just don't know what has happened to people and being civilized and thoughtful or at least having the tinest bit of courtesy and consideration for the other person.  has this economy turned us all into demanding, crabby, abusive individuals - am beginning to think so and if nothing else - i am the eternal pollyana most of the time but whew - i do believe my pollyana type behavior is really being tested!!!  will elaborate on this a little bit later - after i have tamed my fingers and my brain down so that i can write something other than @#$%#@$^&^# across the page in describing certain behaviors.

nicky and daisy doggers have had the doggie flu - daisy got it monday night - she stayed with her dadda all day tuesday and basically slept it off - but news reports everywhere around here about dogger flu and to be very, very careful...apparently it's killing some of the less strong and older dogs.  mine are all under the age of two years...and the oldest, mr. gatsby has not contacted it - but it seems to be spaced about a week apart.  totally listless, turning head away from snacks and treats and throwing up (no food - just throwing up).  it seems to last about 36 hours - and all they want is water and sleep - much like us - can't even get them to lick vanilla ice cream - just not interested.  so watch out for your creatures - they need their mamas and daddas right now protect them.

i'm going to be doodling around with the rest of the blog - there are some beautiful ones out there - and i just need to fidget and fiddle and see what i can put where...but a few more days at 6:30 a.m. in the shop and i should be sort of caught up...but we are redoing us and redoing our interests and outlets first, making some changes in how we do business and what is of utmost importance and i have many things to put away and get physically straightened out here before i can start addressing the world according to blogs and how that all tangles with our lives and how we run them. 

so...that being said - i'm going to post this and then go and play around with the settings...i'm terrified that if i play "settings" while this remains unposted that it will just disappear into a poof of green smoke never to be seen again (see - i still really am a baby at this stuff) mass - here we come - maybe i can make the background a different color..."poof"

Friday, January 9, 2009

2009 has started - were we just not talking about this a few months ago - it can't possible be 2009 already - but alas, it is and so we must forge ahead. i have been attempting to make lists - it's kind of a joke actually...

i have been lost since the beginning of december when i lost my razor cell phone and had to replace it with something totally foreign to me - that has been an incredibly steep learning curve for me...and in an attempt to force myself to use the things that come with the phone...i did not purchase a dayrunner refill for my desk calendar...i'm trying...but whew...

my house is a destruction zone, the back of this shop is a destruction zone...for that matter, the world is a destruction zone...and it's not going to get any better before it gets a whole bunch worse - chaos at it's very finest.

daisy is now almost 21 weeks - she had her big girl rabies shot on tuesday and has her spay surgery scheduled for the monday before we leave for market in february. mr. nickolas turned one year yesterday - his papa bought him roasted chicken for his birthday dinner and nicky totally enjoyed his celebration supper as did the other two doggers and the kitties too!

we are working on something really cute for next october - not so much a "stitched" piece but a box full of "stuff" - i'm working on the proto-types right now that will be going with me to market in nashville.

we are also knee deep in sheet metal, bolts of fabric, cans of stain, mod podge and pva glue - and the world is going to come to a grinding halt here when boxes start arriving - because we are taking that stuff to market with us too.

annie's granddaughter angelina is growing like a weed as well...a healthy little girl who is almost 3 months old come the 11th of this month. annie has also been keeping her vet in college tuitions - her golden retreiver raider went around a corner too fast somewhere in the backyard and ripped his side open...they have sutured it twice now - and put in drains again...and he is recovering but still draining and now has a wardrobe of sweatshirts that he wears so he can't scratch the wound and rip the 2nd set of stitches out.

as you can probably tell it's been a three ringed circus around here and it's just the very beginning of the year.

i took a break from the world over the holidays - this christmas despressed me something fierce...very sad to watch very sad people and december was a tough month as it was a year anniversary of our losing our first puppy mr. shoo...but the good side was it was a year anniversary of us getting our the month was bittersweet.

my mom will be celebrating her 84th birthday at the end of this month on the same day as chinese new years we will be doing some celebrating with her and then the next sunday is superbowl and then daisy has her surgery on the monday and thursday we leave for nashville.

so...because the update has been done and because i have actually blogged a bit...and because i am trying to set myself a schedule so i keep up with this...i'm heading off to do some PVA gluing and some planning and some stuffing of a little green wool pin cushion and some more planning...and then maybe i'll attack the pile of sheet metal - but that one is some scary stuff because it's literally like razor blades on the edges - i've cut myself 3 times already - just prepping the pieces for what i need to do with them.

maybe the ups man will bring me something wonderful...and i have to go order boxes from the post office and find my list of things that i need to do and add to that... the surprising thing is that i actually know where those lists are and i can see the top of my desk - can success be too far behind?

good playoff games tomorrow and sunday - and we are now finished with college ball after last night's game and the 651 "bowl" games that have been on over the last two weeks...can baseball be far behind.

but first we need to do basketball and march madness - i'll show you "mad" :)