Sunday, January 20, 2008

Happy Birthday (party) Rickey

Today is my step-father's birthday. Well, not his birthday, that's not until Tuesday, but today WAS his birthday party. Mmmm... Turkey supper with all the fixins. Gotta love a FREE turkey supper.

Here was my contribution to the celebration. This "Maple Leafs" Birthday Cake!

Rickey is a HUGE Leafs fan, and has a rather large collection of Leafs memorabilia, most of which NEVER EVER gets used. The two coffee cups with the Leafs logos on them that we gave him for Christmas several years ago sit on a shelf in the kitchen. He won't use them. The Zippo lighter with the Leafs logo that my Mom got him for Christmas one year isn't even out of the package, and the rest is the same. So, when we walked in today with this cake he was pleasantly surprised, expecting just a plain Chocolate cake with chocolate icing. But he then proceeded to tell me that he loves it but "we can't eat it!" Lol. Well, too bad, there were four little kids running around that put a stop to THAT idea rather quickly.

Random Winter Pictures

A shot of my backyard in mid afternoon with the moon above the trees.

Same location, just a closeup of the snow covered fence.

Olivia, Rachel and Jason out playing in the snow.

My kids and husband in their first snowfort.

"Pew Pew" - Olivia pretending to shoot at me from lazerbeams on her wrists.
(She's been watching Buzz Lightyear on Playhouse Disney lately)

Rachel eating snow. Don't worry it wasn't yellow. *heehee*

Thursday, January 17, 2008

One Smart Dog!!

An old, tired-looking dog wandered into the yard. I could tell from his collar and well-fed belly that he had a home. He followed me into the house, down the hall, and fell asleep in a corner. An hour later, he went to the door, and I let him out.

The next day he was back, resumed his position in the hall, and slept for an hour. This continued for several weeks.

Curious, I pinned a note to his collar: "Every afternoon your dog comes to my house for a nap."

The next day he arrived with a different note pinned to his collar: "He lives in a home with ten children -- he's trying to catch up on his sleep. Can I come with him tomorrow?"

Note: This is NOT my picture, it just came with the email joke, so I thought I'd include it here.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Visions of Dragons

I Finally finished stitching my Dream Sampler from Dragon Dreams. I've got 45 hours total stitching time on it. I didn't end up frogging out the Watercolors in the fairy's skirt. It looked fine with half stitches of the MUCH thicker Watercolors fibres, rather than the Waterlilies that it called for. I did, however frog the backstitching around the fairy's wings (what a chore that was!) and the backstitch swirls beside the fairy's wings. (which is much harder to see with the finer thread)

This one is for Olivia. I do plan on stitching it again for Rachel once I find a fabric that I suits it.

When I get around to getting it framed I'll post another picture.

Oh, I forgot to mention that it's stitched on 32 ct Iris Garden Opalescent Lugana from Silkweaver.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Cake Cake and more Cake

Well, I still havn't gotten any stitching done lately. My cousin and best friend, Janice is celebrating her 29th birthday on Wednesday, and was having a birthday party last night, so I decided to bake a cake for her.

Here is the cake I ended up making.

This was my first attempt at using rolled fondant, and I decided to try making Marshmallow Fondant. I loved it! It wasn't nearly as tricky to work with as I thought it would be. The only thing I'd do differently is I wouldn't make a square cake using fondant again. the corners were really very tricky. But the idea behind the cake was for it to look like two stacked presents, so I could get away with folding the corners on it, which I gratefully did.

I decided on these colours because it matches her bedroom, which she reedecorated just last spring.

Here is a quick picture of Olivia on Friday afternoon as we finished mixing up the cake mix and she was happily licking the spoon and beaters while the cake was baking.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Cat 3

Picture is not mine. Just posting it for fun

Thursday, January 10, 2008

I need to vent

Today's post has nothing to do with stitching, although I am only a day away from finishing Dream Sampler -- I'll post a picture as soon as it's done. It also has nothing to do with the Christmas pictures that I promised to post the last time I wrote, though hopefully I'll get off my duff and actually post them soon. It also has nothing to do with what I've been up to lately, which usually involves listening to either the new "Ultimate Santana" CD or the new Colbie Callait CD "CoCo" (which is great by the way) and reading online fanfic. Todays post is me venting about the freaking NB Health Care System.

Every child in New Brunswick (and I'm assuming all of Canada as well) goes for a 3 1/2 year checkup with the public health nurses, they make sure her eyesight is fine, check her hearing and speech as well as some general things like recognition of shapes, colours, etc. Basically just looking to see if there's anything that you're child is signifigantly behind on before they get to school. Well, Olivia had her 3 1/2 year checkup in May of 2007. (8 months ago) A speech therapist from the Parle Moi/Talk With Me program here in NB was there and mentioned that she thought that Olivia needed to be referred to see a speech therapist for her "imprecision" in her speech. She said that it's not a big problem, but something that should be looked into before school started if possible.

"Great! No problem." I said. "When do we go?" So then she tells me that the waiting list to get into a speech therapist in the Fredericton/Oromocto region is 8-10 months because they are short of speech therapists at the moment. A few weeks later I received a letter from the Speech Language Pathology Outpatient Department that said basically the same thing. 8-10 months. Ok, I can deal with that. They're dealing with staff shortages, there's not much I can do about it so there's not much sense in complaining. Right? Or, at lest, complaining isn't going to get me in any faster so no sense in getting myself all agrivated and worked up over something that I have no control over and no chance of changing.

Anyway, my cousin Janice asked me a few weeks ago if I'd ever heard any more about it and I said no I hadn't. She suggested calling to find out how much longer the wait would be since it was soon approaching 8 months since I was referred, and I hadn't yet received call to schedule an appointment within the next little while.

So, this morning I called the Audiology dept (same dept as speech therapist) and asked what how far up on the list Olivia currently was since we had been on the list since May of last year. She advises me she'll find out and give me a call back later this morning. About an hour later I get a call back and she informs me that they are still short staffed and it'll be at LEAST another YEAR befor we can get in. I nearly lost it. I know it's not her fault personally, and that thought is the only thing that kept me from completely going off on her about it. I said, something along the line of "So she's going to be in SCHOOL before she can get into a therapist?" and she said that was right, but that if I wanted her to get the speech help she needs before school I'd have to see a private speech therapist at a cost of $70-$80 per HOUR.

And, you know what makes me the angriest of all? I asked the "Parle Moi/Talk With Me" speech therapist whether Olivia needed to see someone at least TWICE in the year prior to her 3 1/2 year screening and she told me that Olivia was fine and her speech was just developing and would be fine. But during our meeting after the screening she told me that a parent usually notices the problems early on and they (the speech therapists) usually take that into account. If she had actually listened to me when I asked her about it the first few times, Olivia may have been into see a therapist by now and I wouldn't be going through this.


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Welcome 2008

Well, Happy New Year for those of you who still check my Blog periodically. I rarely post anymore and I blame it all on the addiction that is Fanfiction. I've been stuck on a site (Twisting the Hellmouth - A Buffy the Vampire Slayer Crossover Fanfic site) for several months now. I've been giving less attention to my husband and kids (to some extent), my housework and most of all my stitching. DH and DD's and my housework have been getting a little less attention than normal, but my stitching has been almost completely non existant since that site started sucking up all my free time.

Here's a Family Picture that we had done in early December by a local Fredericton Photographer. We got them done just barely in time to go out with our Christmas Cards.

I've decided to run down my "To Do List" that I posted at the end of last year and see which ones have been accomplished and which ones have not. I commented after each item on whether it was a success or not. Blue text means I was successful with that item for 2007 and red text means I wasn't successful.

2007 To Do List

  1. Play with and read to my kids more - Yes, for a good part of the year until my Fanfic addiction took hold the last few months I was doing good with this.
  2. Try to keep up with my housework (or at least a little more than usual) - HA, not likely.
  3. Post on my blog at least once a week - This might have happened for the first month or so, but definitely a failure if we look at it long term.
  4. Post more to the email lists I belong to (no more lurking!) - I think I did good with this one for a while as well, but I haven't even CHECKED my email on that account for at least 6 months! A Dismal failure on that one ;)
  5. Comment more on other's blogs. - I always complain that no one (or rather very few people) comment on my blog, but I'm guilty of reading and running as well. But not anymore! - Again, I did well for a while but fell off the wagon early.
  6. Try and stitch at least two nights per week (EVERY week) - Nope
  7. Finish "Waiting" - YES YES YES!
  8. Start "Summer Blooms" (It's the second picture in this post) - Yep
  9. Finish "Summer Blooms" - Nope
  10. Start "Fairy Moon" - Yep
  11. Finish "Fairy Moon" (though not likely!) - Nope (though as you can see I wasn't really expecting to)
  12. Stitch "Quilt" (a DMC freebie I picked up online. See the pic here) and make it into a needlebook - Yep, though I never did finish stitching around the outside edge after finishing the needlebook
  13. Stitch and "finish" 3 new Christmas Ornaments for 2007 - HA. I never even got one finished. I stitched it and it sat there for a month waiting for me to put the beads on it. Never got to it yet.
  14. "finish" 3rd Ornament from 2006 (Blackwork Noel) - Nope... damn I'm lazy when it comes to finishing.
  15. Get started on a scrapbook for Rachel. - I got a few pages done, but never went further... though since I only said get "STARTED" on a scrapbook I guess this is a success *Woohoo*
  16. Make a monthly "to do" list each month to help keep me on track. - teeheehee... Nope, I think I did this in January and maybe one other month... 2 out of 12 - a success? I think not.

Ok, I think we can all agree that there is substantially more red than blue on the list, which means I need to either a) be more realistic in my goals or b) get off my tush and actually work on the things I WANT to accomplish and not assume that they're just going to happen on their own.

That being said, here are a few things I want to accomplish in 2008.

General Goals

  1. Spend more time playing with my kids and NOT sit on my butt in front of the computer while Olivia asks me to play with her. There's only so long when your kids actually WANT to be with you and be seen with you. I want to take advantage of those short years as much as possible.
  2. Walk on the treadmill at least 3 times a week. I got a treadmill in the late spring and I need to use it more
  3. Lose 20 lbs. (this kind of goes with #2)
  4. Reconnect with some of my Fredericton friends that I've lost touch with over the past year and a half - Most of whom I only hear about second hand through my friend Bridget.
  5. Write one multi-chapter Fanfic at TtH, instead of just lurking and reading all the wonderful (and in some cases - not so wonderful) stories.
Stitching Goals

  1. Finish Olivia's Dream Sampler - I'm nearly done now as it is.
  2. Finish Summer Blooms
  3. Finish (or at least make substantial progress on) Fairy Moon
  4. Start Mother's Tree (Lavender & Lace) (deciding on the fabric to stitch this on should be one task all on it's own)
  5. Start a second Dream Sampler for Rachel (again, once I figure out which fabric to use)
  6. Start Romantic Stitcher (Passione Ricamo)
  7. Start my Peace Snowglobe
  8. Finish my Peace Snowglobe
  9. Start Fairy Celebration 2
  10. Finish Fairy Celebration 2
  11. Have one Ornament weekend each month where I try to stitch one ornament a month -- If I don't get 12 made, I'd settle for one "finished" ornament for each of us. (As well as finishing the ones that I didn't from previous years.)

Heh, talk about being unrealistic. lol

I'll try to remember to post again tomorrow and put up a couple of pics from the holidays. If I just save this as a draft and attempt to add to it later when I have time I may NEVER get this one posted. At least this way I've posted something!

Some (but not all) blinkies adopted from:

Others found randomly around the net and put here to use for my own nefarious purposes! Muahahahaha. (*J/K*)