Thursday, July 29, 2010

Dinner and a Movie on de Bayou and a Post from DS

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

Light as a Cloud Meatballs and Steve-ghetti
Over-Mutated Garlic Bread
Ice Cream Snowball! (Blue Bell Happy Tracks)

DS wanted to share one of his Lego creations
Star Wars - Jabba's Palace
Notice the black trap door that sends unsuspecting minifigures into the pit.

Caught a snap of the Blue Dog who popped up shortly after the BP Oil Spill

(Don't ya'll love our above ground power lines)

Busy, Busy, Busy . . .

Took a trip to Hancock Fabrics today, the McCall's patterns were 99 cents.  I also picked up some fabrics for a couple of Christmas presents (I'll show you when they are done) and some fabrics pictured below for DS's room "redo" (he chose lime and neon orange).

I am cleaning out the office/hobby room and reorganizing it so I can set up a semi-permanent sewing space.

I did a  little stitching on "Season of Love". 

Since this is our last full week of summer, I have been focusing on trying to finish the closet cleaning, organizing and setting up for the school year.  I will have plenty of time for stitching after school starts on the 9th.

The oil spill situation has improved and the Atlantic is quiet -- it is good news all around.

Gotta go, DH needs help hanging curtain rods.  After that, I have to start dinner for our family movie night, we are watching "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs".

Tomorrow is the last day for my giveaway.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

DVD: Hetty Wainthropp Investigates

A great cozy mystery for British mystery buffs.  Hetty has just reached a milestone, her 60th birthday, but she has no intention of growing old gracefully. "I'm not 60 and I never will be," Hetty proclaims. "I'm not a senior citizen."

Hetty takes a job at the post office, where she meets a young shoplifter.  Hetty becomes involved in a mystery at the post office.  She ultimately decides her talents are being wasted and opens her own detective agency, taking Geoffery, the shoplifter, under her wing as an assistant. 

As one police inspector grudgingly admits, "She's an extraordinary woman. She's no Miss Marple, but….".

Well paced for stitching.


It has been so hot this summer and I am trying to think cool thoughts,
so I decided it is time for a little Christmas in July.
To celebrate my 100th post and acquiring 50 friendly followers,
I am having another giveaway!

Six months ago, I found the stitching blogosphere
and discovered
so many wonderful stitchers from across the globe
that share their projects, tips and inspiration (as well as a little of their lives and loves). 

You are such a friendly, cheerful, generous and creative group. 
I am endlessly inspired by your blogs. 
In the last 6 months, I have been the thankful winner of a few giveaways,
so it is time to pay it forward with my second giveaway.

I already have some threads, a kitted design, and some fabric
and I have a few more little treats and treasures to add.

The winner will be selected on Saturday, July 31st.

If you are interested, leave a comment on this post.
If you are a follower, leave a second comment for a second entry.
If you post the giveaway on your blog, leave a third comment for a third entry.

Make sure I can access your e-mail on your profile or please include it in your comment.

(Winner selected by random number drawing.)

Friday, July 23, 2010

New Stash and My 100th Post

Doing school shoe shopping (oh joy) put me near my LNSs.  I picked up a little something in each, just doing my bit to support the local economy ; )

From Acadian Corner - threads and fabric (28 count Country French Linen in Latte) for The Sampler Girl's "At Home with Jane Austen"

From Accents, Inc - a new chart - "French Country Fleur-de-Lis" by JBW Designs - I have some definite ideas for this little beauty.

BTW, the models for this chart were stitched by the customers of Accent's, Inc.

In between stops, we stopped for lunch at Byblos (Lebanese) - budget busting, but yummy.  I will have to dedicate a weekend to making homemade kibby and meat/spinach pies to stock the freezer! (I will be sure to put it on my cooking blog, they are really delicious.)

Did some in-the-car stitching on "Season of Love" since DH had the day off and did the driving.  Lots of bumpy roads in these parts, so not alot of progress, but at least I did not stick my finger with the needle.

Stitching this is giving me a craving for some ginger-y baked goods, maybe the rain from Bonnie will cool the temperatures enough to do some baking this weekend, but first, we will be battening down the hatches and trying to cut the grass before the winds and rain begin.  Hoping Bonnie keeps moving quickly so she does not have time to strengthen over the warm Gulf waters or dump too much rain in one place.

This was my 100th post, so check back tomorrow for my giveaway.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Cook Book: Mediterranean Clay Pot Cooking by Paula Wolfert

I picked this book up at the library this week, I love one pot cooking.  Since I do not have any clay pots, I will be adapting some recipes for my enameled cast iron and glass bakeware.  Wolfert insists that the dishes taste better cooked in clay, and I believe her because I feel the same about my favorite cast iron skillet.  These vessels absorb the flavors of the foods you cook and this "seasoning" enhances the flavor of all dishes cooked in the vessel.

I wish there were more photos of finished dishes, but the included photos all have the wonderfully warm and rustic feel of the cover photo and filled my head with possibilities.  The recipes lend themselves to easy variations to accomodate personal tastes. 

This was a good idea book for me, and I will be trying a few of these recipies on my cooking blog soon - in fact, I have eggplant and tomatoes in the kitchen now just begging to be turned into a little Musakka/Moussaka/Mussak'a . . . gotta go!

Check my cooking blog later this week to see the results.

Book: A Catered Christmas by Isis Crawford

A Catered Christmas (3rd in the series)
By Isis Crawford

Libby and Bernie are "volunteered" to participate in a televised cooking competition when the not so charming hostess killed by an exploding oven. 

Can the sisters unmask the murderer, win the competition and keep up with the Christmas baking and catering for their bakery?

Cute culinary mystery. 

DVD: Keeping Up Appearances - Series 1

Keeping Up Appearances: My Way or the Hyacinth Way

Who doesn't know a Hyacinth Bucket (pronounced "Bouquet," if you please).  Hyacinth is a nosey neighbor, busy body and aspiring social climber.

Book: A Colourful Death by Carola Dunn

A Colourful Death
If you love Mrs. Pollifax and Miss Marple, you will enjoy meeting Eleanor Trewynn.  After a life spent travelling around the world as a missionary, recently widowed Eleanor retires to a small Cornish village of Port Mabyn.  However, murder once again disrupts her quiet life over the LonStar thrift shop. Eleanor and her Westie, Teazle, must try to prove artist neighbor Nick Gresham's innocence when he is suspected of murdering a rival artist, Geoffrey Monmouth.  There is no shortage of interesting suspects and colorful locations.  A great cozy mystery!

Prior book in the series:
Manna from Hades (2009)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Giveaway, A New Start and A Gift

Lots of  quick updates today . . .

at 52 Flea to celebrate Laura's 500th post, if you love all things vintage you will love 52 Flea.

I started my first ornament from the 2010 JCS Ornament Preview issue, "Season of Love" by Nikki Leeman of Country Cottage Needleworks  {Thanks for the correction, Patty : ) }

I am stitching this charming little gingerbread couple as a gift for a friend who gave me my new stitching bag. It is so cheerful and I filled it with stitching goodies for me to take my stitching "on the road".  It will be the second thing I grab (photos are first) if we have an evacu-cation this hurricane season.

The winds and waves keep the oil on the move, the spread is much larger than my update from last week.  It has also moved closer to the coast -- I do not think this will ever end!

Well looks like Tropical Depression # 3 (Bonnie if she becomes a TS or hurricane) is going to give us a rainy weekend and put a stop to oil spill clean-up.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Look what was waiting in the mailbox . . .

I won Stitchin' Sweet Sue's giveaway and her package of goodies arrived today.

(isn't that floss tag too cute!)

Look at everything all nestled in their little bag.

But oh how wonderful!  It almost feels like Fall has arrived
 (especially since I just turned down the a/c another notch).

ONE beautifully handcrafted pinkeep,
TWO samples of Glove in a Bottle
(and it could not come at a better time, our dishwasher is involved in a recall (fire hazard)
and they do not come to fix it until Monday so I have been doing alot of handwashing with both DH & DS at home) THREE lovely finishing fabrics
and . . .
EIGHT beautiful threads!
(WDW Pecan, Amber, Caper, Havana, Oak, & Brick
and GAST - Autumn Leaves & Heirloom Gold)

It is overcast here, so the colors are off in my photos (and I had to use my alternate camera with no flash). 
Sue's giveaway photo is much better than mine.
If you haven't found her blog yet, stop by for a visit

Thank you so much, Sue!!

Stitching Update: 
I am struggling with my stitching lately, it is a combination of very rough hands (from all that handwashing), having both DH and DS home, and the heat.  But the dishwasher will be fixed on Monday, DH's vacation is also over on Monday and DS goes back to school in 2 weeks.  Wish the heat was going away soon, too.  Hoping to post a better stitching update with photos soon.

Oil Spill Update

Book: Stork Raving Mad by Donna Andrews

In the eleventh book in this laugh-out-loud series, Meg is due to give birth to twins any day and, as usual, is surrounded by chaos.  It is early December and the heat has gone out at Caerphilly College.  Her husband, drama professor, Michael has brought home two dozen assorted drama students who are camped all over the house, in addition to some computer student interns moved into the basement by her brother.

Drama student Ramon Soto is holding rehersals for his play for his doctoral thesis, until one very nasty college administrator, Dr. Jean Wright shows up.  When Wright turns up dead, Meg is caught in the middle (between naps and trips to the bathroom).  There is no shortage of suspects or motives, can Meg solve the mystery before going into labor?

Although not the funniest book in the series, it was still a fun, light, well written mystery full of wonderfully colorful characters that kept me guessing until the end (which is usually hard to do).  I recommend reading the books in this series in order so you get to know Meg's family wonderfully eccentric family and follow her relationship with, now husband, Michael.  This is a great series that has actually had me laughing out loud while reading (also hard to do).

Other books in the Meg Langslow Mysteries series:
Murder with Peacocks (1st)
Murder with Puffins (2nd)
We'll Always Have Parrots
Revenge of the Wrought Iron Flamingos
Crouching Buzzard, Leaping Loon
Owls Well That Ends Well
No Nest for the Wicket
Six Geese-a-Slaying
Cockatiels at Seven
Swan for the Money (10th)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

It is Just Too Hot to Stitch

But, I have started putting together a few items for an upcoming giveaway.

Not much stitching to report, I am making slow progress on LHN's Winter Sheep from the 2010 ornament series.  And in case you have not heard, Diane Williams announced we can expect a 2011 series!

I am stitching an ornament for some married friends,
I wanted to put our initials on the back, whose go first, the giver or the reciever? 
I am going to use the husband's first initial, then the surname initial and the wife's first initial.

T  S


D  B

Well, DH is outside "playing" with his new toy.  I got to try it and WOW!  Our old electric pressure washer had nothing on this one.  DH hit a gap in the front door and water flew in and went 8 feet from the door!

Looking forward to going for snoballs after he is finished!

Hope you are having a great weekend!

Is There a Doctor in the House?

Doc Martin (Series 1 - 4)

Just finished watching series 4 in this quirky series. 

Surly, tactless and uptight, Dr. Martin Ellingham is at the top of his field as a vascular surgeon, until he develops hemophobia - the fear of blood.  Now he has taken a position as the GP in a village in Cornwall.  As a diagnostician, you could not ask for better, but his bed side manner leave much to be desired.  Fortunately for him, he is the only doctor in town, so his waiting room is always full of the wonderfully quirky village residents.  This show is filmed in a beautiful location with deep blue sea, narrow winding streets lined with stone cottages and a backdrop of a rocky and amazingly green countryside.

Each series has been just as good as the last and just when you think Doc Martin might begin to show a little compassionate bedside manner, he lets loose with another blunt, thoughtless and rude remark. Think of  Becker meets House meets Northern Exposure with a touch of Monk. 

Wonderful stitching DVD since you can concentrate on your stitching during brief graphic medical scenes if you have a touch of hemophobia yourself.

WARNING:  May not be for family viewing due to occasional nudity and language.  Apparently, British television standards differ from U.S. (although we seem to be not far behind in some areas and leading the way in others - sigh).

Friday, July 9, 2010

Guess what my hubby brought home . . .

the Christmas ornament preview issue of Just Cross Stitch . . . he has been listening.  I could not find it anywhere so he went to a book store an hour away and it was their last copy!  Love you!!!

I love the coordinating gingerbread designs from LHN and CCN and the fleur-de-lis in 'Tis Green by La-D-Da.

Guess I better get my subscription in so I can receive the ornament issue.  I want to order a few of the old Christmas ornament issues, too.  I have 2004 and 2009 ornament issues, but not the previews.

Our temps are in the upper 90s with a heat index of 108, hoping it is cooler where you are.  Keep cool and keep stitching!

The Big Four: A Hercule Poirot Novel by Agatha Christie

Just finished this one today. I think it is one of my favorite Poirot stories. Lots of twists and cliff hangers, a quick and enjoyable read.

Hercule Poirot matches wits against the very powerful "Big Four". These four criminal masterminds have joined forces and have big plans (read: world domination). This is international intrique is not the typical Christie murder mystery. Poirot may have finally met his match and becomes desperate enough to call on his equally clever, but lazy, twin brother Achille. This is a fight to the death.

I would love to see this made into an episode for Masterpiece Mystery.
Find this book on

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

DVD: Mother Teresa

I watched this movie with my DS last night and thought he would fall asleep during the movie since it was past his bedtime, but he not only stayed wide awake, but fully engaged in the movie. After the movie, he was full of questions. We will be reading The Simple Path and Come Be My Light, both written by Mother Teresa between now and the start of school (just 31 days away).  The movie begins with Mother Teresa already in India as a teacher in a convent school, after 20 years in India she receives a calling to a new vocation to help the poor and petitions Rome for  the creation of a new congregation, The Missionaries of Charity. She was fully aware that the work she did was only "a drop in the bucket", but she dedicated herself to her vocation completely.  Her unfaltering faith in the provision of God is awe inspiring. She left the comfort of the convent to live with the "poorest of the poor": the sick and dying, the lost and the lepers.  She lived for today and had faith that God would provide for tomorrow.  Her strength and simplicity is inspirational to all, whatever your belief system.

"At the end of our lives, we will not be judged by how many diplomas we have received, how much money we have made or how many great things we have done.

We will be judged by
‘I was hungry and you gave me to eat.
I was naked and you clothed me.
I was homeless and you took me in.'
Hungry not only for bread-but hungry for love.

Naked not only for clothing-but naked of human dignity and respect.

Homeless not only for want of a room of bricks-but homeless because of rejection.

This is Christ in distressing disguise."
HIGHLY recommended!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Thinking I May Be Enhancing My Stash Soon

My local needle shop has these charts in it's new arrivals list . . .



DVD: Sense and Sensibility (1981 / 1985)

Enjoyed this version of the Jane Austen classic.  It is very slow moving and detailed; without the modern slant of the 1995 screenplay staring Emma Thompson.  Margaret Dashwood, the youngest sister, is non-existent in this version, but it allows more focus on Elenor and Marianne and their relationships.

This movie is a wonderful stitching companion, though I do wish it included more scenes with the characters doing needlework.

DVD: Agatha Christie's Poirot - Collector's Set (Volumes 1 - 6)

Volume 1 - The Disappearance of Mr. Davenheim, The Veiled Lady, and The Lost Mine
Volume 2 - The Cornish Mystery, Double Sin, and The Adventure of the Cheap Flat
Volume 3 - The Kidnapped Prime Minister, The Adventure of the Western Star, and How Does Your Garden Grow?
Volume 4 - The Million Dollar Bank Robbery, The Plymouth Express, and Wasps' Nest
Volume 5 - The Tragedy at Mardson Manor, The Double Clue, The Mystery of the Spanish Chest
Volume 6 - The Theft of the Royal Ruby, The Affair at the Victory Ball, and The Mystery of Hunter's Lodge

I love British mysteries and what is not to love about David Suchet as Agatha Christie's over-preening Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot.  Armed with only "the little grey cells", Poirot solves mysteries that leave the police baffled.  This is a wonderful series and I am looking forward to watching the remaining 6 volumes in this series filmed from 1990 to 2005.

Good stitching movie, although I had to do a little rewinding when I missed clues or important plot devices.

Oil Spill Update

The long, slender thread of white is a barrier island.  If our barrier islands were still intact, they would act as booms to protect the marshes.  While the oil spill would destroy the habitats of the barrier islands, it would be easier to clean those islands than to clean the coastal marshes.  Governor Jindal's sand berms are in effect, man-made barrier islands.  While the berms may temporarily effect the local ecosystems, I have to think that it would be a less detrimental effect than the majority of the oil reaching the marshes.

These berms, after they were cleaned, could be used as barrier islands for hurricane protection.  During the last 70 years, these islands have erroded and many have disappeared.  The marshy areas along our coastline have also erroded, we loose the equivalent of a football field each day. Our first line of hurricane protection is the barrier islands and marshes.  The tidal surge that accompanies a hurricane is blunted by the barrier islands and marshes and a hurricane passing over these "land" masses begins to weaken before reaching the large inland cities, like New Orleans.

Look a the change in the amount of land mass between New Orleans and the Gulf in the last 200 years . . .

Thought for the Day #1

There is no psychiatrist in the world
like a puppy licking your face.
                                                                  - Bern Williams

Thursday, July 1, 2010

In Theater: Toy Story 3

I am always cautious seeing a sequel since they are usually a disappointment after the orginal, but Toy Story 3 is one of the few sequels that is worthy of the original.  Some time has passed since Toy Story 2 and Andy is preparing to leave for college.  Mom is urging him to go through his room to determine what items go with him to college, which are donated and which items are destined for the attic.  Woody makes it to the "for college" box and all of his other toys are meant for the attic.  In a mix-up, the toys end up going into the trash.  The toys rescue themselves from the trash narrowly missing the garbage truck and place themselves in the donation box for Sunnyside.  The toys are convinced Andy meant to throw them away.  Woody trys to explain what happened, but before he can convince the others, he ends up at Sunnyside, too.  WARNINGThis sequel is a little darker than the prior installments and Moms should keep a couple of Kleenex handy for some sentimental moments.

For a very detailed review, see Plugged-In's review of Toy Story 3

DVD: Sharpe's Rifles series

Sharpe's Rifles series

Sean Bean stars in the title role of Richard Sharpe in these adaptations of Bernard Cornwell's novels.  Set during the Napoleonic Wars, Richard Sharpe has risen through the ranks of Wellington’s army by his own merit and ambition. Full of action, adventure and romance and it made me curious to learn more about the Napoleanic wars.

I have watched 11 of the 15 available DVDs and I am looking forward to finishing the series.

Not quite as easy to stitch to as Jane Austen movies, but is set in the same era, which makes it stitching friendly for me.

DVD: Rockford Files - Season 1

I remember playing on the living room floor while my father watched Rockford Files on television.  Thought it would be fun to watch.  My DS even watched parts of a couple of episodes - he loved the car chases. 

What a change from the detective shows on television today.  Have to admit, the bad guys do not seem so menacing when compared with those in today's detective dramas.

It was a fun look back on the early 70s in all it's gilt-edged, gas guzzling, cheesy glory.