Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Event 14383980

The dog and the cat slept through it but we sure felt the earthquake this morning. During all the shaking, I kept an eye on my bookcase and remembered how I never had it attached to the wall like you're supposed to. (It wasn't moving too violently so I don't think there was any danger of it falling over, but I really should have it bolted to the wall.) Once the earthquake was over, I went to the USGS site and filled out a Did you feel it? form. I've done that in the past and never have anything significant to report, but I think it's neat to look at the statistics afterwards. Over 38,000 people sent in information on where they were, what they felt, and if they suffered any damage when Event 14383980 happened.

There's a free pattern for a cute bunny doll at Raggedy Old Annies. I like how they look old-timey from being stained with coffee.

TipNut is sharing vintage patterns and instructions for some cute potholders, including a tea pot, a coffee pot, a butterfly, two oven mitts and a round one with birds.

WishbookWeb.com has photos from vintage store catalogs from 1940 through 1982, including the 1971 Sear's Christmas catalog [link via Meggiecat]. I just found my Mia doll in there. She sold for $6.97 that year!

I still have Mia. No, I didn't cut her bangs. Why do you ask?

And Hilarity Ensues

ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Are you funny because you're from Orange County, or in spite of it?

WILL FERRELL (laughing): You know, I definitely think it was because I was from Orange County.

OCR: Why?

FERRELL: Growing up in suburbia, in safe, master-planned Irvine, there was no drama so we had to create it in our heads. My main form of entertainment was cracking my friends up and exploring new ways of being funny. I didn't have to have the survival mode instinct like other comics, who grew up in tough neighborhoods. I had the opposite. For me, I grew up in Mayberry, and the humor broke the boredom. And there was a lot to make fun of.

OCR: Give me an example.

FERRELL: The Irvine PD loved giving bike tickets because they didn't have a lot to do. That always amused me.

I once got a bike ticket from Officer Murray of the Irvine Police Department while on my way to the library. I was riding my bicycle on the side walk and going against traffic. Had I been on the the sidewalk on the other side of the street, going with traffic, I would have been ok.

An hour or so later, Officer Murray gave my sister a ticket for the same crime. We ended up having to go to Bicycle Traffic School.

I don't know why I'm sharing this.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Aprons And Shih Tzus

Katherine Dunn of Donkey Dreams has put up a gallery of the aprons she received for Pino's Pie Day. These are the aprons that did not sell on Pie Day (read more here) so go buy one now and put some cash into Pino's money bucket.

The Apron Queen is having yet another giveaway for an apron from her store.

Check out the rick rack on this apron at Primrose Design. Doesn't that look cool?

The deadline for Tie One On's Gingham Summer apron theme has been extended to September 1st. I've been doing some chicken scratch on some pink gingham. We'll see if I actually make an apron, but if not, I'm learning all about chicken scratch.

And, this is for all you hardcore Shih Tzu lovers: a short clip of my dog doing nothing but trotting through the house. Notice how she looks back at me when I call her name. Amazing since she can't hear anything anymore. The camera work leaves a lot to be desired and the commercial for the HPV vaccine in the background adds a nice touch.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

One More Award

(I'm totally having a Sally Field moment: you like me, you really like me. Hah!)

Jennifer of Sweet Pea Stitches has given me the Kreativ Blogger award (thanks, Jenn!). Now I get to pass it on to these five bloggers, who create some of the coolest things: Norma at Random Stitches, Aury at Acerca del bordado, Kellie at And She Can't Even Cook, Kirsten at Kissy-Cross, and Niki at Niki's Ventures.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Another Award

Thank you so much to Lil Birdie for this one!!

The rules for receiving this award are:

1) Put the logo on your blog.
2) Add a link to the person who awarded you.
3) Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4) Add links to those blogs on yours.
5) Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs.

I don't get the "nominee" part -- does that mean no one wins? Does the Academy have to vote before we have a winner? Well, I am giving the award to:

1. Barbara at Oodles and Oodles

2. Gina at Patra's Place (be sure to check out Patra's Embroidered Aprons too)

3. LaGattaC

4. Arizona at The Craftivist/The Crazy People Next Door

5. Elizabeth at Thoughts from an Evil Overlord

6. Penny at Penny Sanford Porcelains

7. Michelle on MySpace, which means you guys can't read her blog, and maybe when she sees this, it will get her to switch to Blogger or Typepad. :P

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

More Giveaways

The Apronista is having another giveaway. This time you can win a vintage apron from The Apron Queen. The best part is you get to choose which one you want. You have until Friday, July 25 to enter.

And, Barbara over at Oodles and oodles is giving away a vintage Christmas ornament, and it won't be the creepy clown.

Suddenly, I'm no longer in a craptastic mood. :)

Monday, July 21, 2008

Only About A Month Late

Once upon a time I discovered I was given a blog award by checking my sitemeter (it had a link back to the blogger who gave it to me). I was pretty excited about it so you know what I did? I forgot all about it. Seriously. I didn't even leave some comments to say thank you. I still feel guilty about that. I also decided if I ever received another award, I would post it about that very day. So, let's pretend it's June 29th, shall we?

Kellie has given me the Arte y Pico Award.

The "Arte y Pico" award was created to be given to bloggers who inspire others with their creative energy and talents, no matter whether it be in the form of writing, artwork, design, interesting material, or contributions to the blogger community. When a blogger receives this award it is considered a "special honor" and, once presented to you, it is to be passed on to at least 5 other bloggers who meet the criteria.

Pretty cool, huh? Thank you so much, Kellie!!!! And, I apologize for not mentioning this award earlier and waiting until you were out of town to do it.

I'm passing on the Pico de gallo award* . . . I mean the Arte y Pico Award to these five extremely talented bloggers:

Emily at The Floss Box -- Emily has done some amazing stitching projects, she creates and shares free patterns, she posts beautiful photos of Sweden, and she is always trying new things, which is very inspiring to me. I was really happy to see her entry was chosen as a finalist in the Feeling Stitchy banner contest. I hope she wins!

Maria at Lil Birdie Stitches -- Lil Birdie is so creative. I believe I found her blog through her super cute Felt Heart Valentine project. She's the kind of person who uses a pattern to make something and then makes something else with it or puts her own spin on it. Check out what Maria did with an empty Cool Whip container. Pretty neat.

Barb at Woof Nanny -- Barb's blog is always full of interesting, fun and creative stuff (OMG, Flicks!) and you really should be reading it regularly. She shares old family photos, cool videos, dog pictures, and recipes, in addition to craft projects. She also blogs at The Purse Project (a purse challenge that we should all join) and Artful Ties (a blog about making art from men's neckties). And, none of that low fat yogurt crap for her. Yeah!

Michelle at My Boring Life -- Pay no attention to the name. Michelle is far from boring. She spins! She makes pink lemonade! She paints pottery! (So does her husband. And no, I don't know if he has a brother.) And, she knits and crochets some fantastic things. Awww, look at the sweater she made for Nimitz. Bonus points for all the sweet pet pictures and for adopting a dog from a rescue.

Jenny at Jenny S Stitcher & Scribbler -- Jenny makes some of the cutest felt creations ever. Her podlings, tea bags and cakes are just adorable. The cuteness of the baby cakes will make your head explode. And, Jenny can also draw too. She turns her "scribbles" into amazing dolls and totebags. She even made nuns cute! Now if we could just get her to make her Ollie scribble into an embroidery pattern.

*I'm not the only one!

Go Vote

Time to go vote in the banner contest at Feeling Stitchy! The finalists are all really cute.

(pssst, vote for Emily so she can win fabulous prizes)

Hungarian Freebies

The other day, I started part 4 of my Hungarian Sampler, only to discover two mistakes in part 3. They were not that noticeable so I decided to leave them be and continued with part 4. I didn't get very far before I realized I had miscounted. Since I hadn't done that much, I ripped out the stitches and was left with a pink stain on my Aida from the red floss. Lovely. I began part 4 again and messed up a second time. By then, I was beyond frustrated and thought it would be better if I started the entire sampler over. So I cut out the stitched part from the piece of fabric and tossed it into the trash. Then I remembered I didn't have another large enough piece of Aida for the sampler nor did I have the money or means to go get one. So I laid on my bed and cried for 20 minutes.

Pretty pathetic, I know.

In related news, here's a Hungarian blog with some cross stitch freebies, including a needlecase with cats and A through G alphabet blocks [link via Cross Stitch Pattern Addict].

Thursday, July 17, 2008

L'ane et le chien

I fell in love with antique embroidery booklets after seeing a bunch of them posted on some French blogs. I was excited to find one that had a cross stitch design with both a dog and donkey in it. I finished stitching it last week. It's way too big to turn into an ornament so I could make it into a pillow but that would involve using a sewing machine and we all know I haven't done that since junior high.

L'ane et al chien
Originally uploaded by PipStitch

Stitched on 18 ct Fiddlers with DMC 931. You can find the chart in Sajou 104 on this page (click the photo for the pdf of the entire booklet).

To see all of the embroidery books on Swappons, go here and then click each cover.

I would love to link to an English translation of the Swappons blog but both Google and Babel Fish are telling me "the requested URLs" are not available on their servers. Whatever. Funny how they have worked every other time I've used them. I'll try again later.

You can find more of these old booklets at les Passe-Temps de Flo (and again Google will not translate it into English). Most of these charts are for cross stitch but I know I've seen some with embroidery patterns. I don't know where they came from since I can't translate the entry but on this post at the same blog are three embroidery patterns with flowers and a pretty alphabet. And, this one has both embroidery and cross stitch flower patterns.

Another site with some of these old charts is Handmade Adelaide. You can find them here and here. (Thanks to Diane for those links!)

There's a new Stitch School post at Primrose Design on Chicken Scratch with some close-up photos of the stitches. And, The Sampler Girl is having a giveaway for a totebag with her Emily Dickinson x-stitch design printed on it.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Thank You So Much

A huge thank you for all the nice comments about my blog and its new sidebar! I am so glad I did not screw things up.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Marital Congress

This test is hilarious. I think the use of slang & profanity and wearing of pajamas while cooking totally brought my score down. And, just what is marital congress?


As a 1930s wife, I am

Take the test!

Test link via I Love Retro Things.

Everyone Is Getting A Dog

Ok, not everyone is getting a dog but Martha and Barack are.

Yesterday, I got an email from Best Friends Animal Society about a web site and petition they started to encourage the Obama family to adopt a dog when it was time to get one rather than buy one from a pet shop or breeder. (The senator has promised his daughters a dog once the election is over, whether or not he wins.) You may not care where the Obamas find a dog for the kids but as Michael Mountain from Best Friends says "It’s a great opportunity to promote the cause of homeless pets everywhere." (Although, Senator Obama may already know not to get a puppy from a pet store since he's pals with Oprah.) Best Friends also has a Flickr group where shelters and rescue groups can post photos of their adoptable dogs.

Update: After seeing some of the dumbass comments on Dogster about why people should or shouldn't vote for Barack Obama, I wanted to add this from Best Friends:

About last week . . .

Several of you wrote in to ask about last week’s e-mail, titled “Let’s send a rescued pooch to the White House.” You wanted to know if that means Best Friends is endorsing Barack Obama. No, we don’t endorse political candidates, so please excuse any confusion here. But when the Obama family talked about wanting to get a new family dog, we did want to take the opportunity to promote pet adoptions.

And to make sure both candidates are fully represented, let’s note that the McCain family already has a rescued mutt – among their 22 family pets. So if John McCain wins the vote, we’re already confident that a nice old pup will be going to the White House, too.

Meanwhile, Martha Stewart wants you to help pick which Chow Chow puppy she should get [link via Cute Overload]. I voted for taking all three of them. Her breeder's site is interesting. There's nothing there about shipping puppies cross country or taking Visa, and she once had the top female Chow in the country. All good things (no pun intended).

And, it's not the Monorail Cat or Monorail Hamster but this cracks me up.

see more dog pictures

Monday, July 14, 2008

Post Number 470

Please let me know if my blog looks alright. I can see a left sidebar, entries in the middle and a right sidebar but I removed 25 px of margin (whatever px is) and maybe that will affect how it looks in other browsers. I still need to add more links to both sidebars too.

Emily at The Floss Box has a challenge going on. She's posted a cute little house embroidery pattern and a list of DMC colors to use, but you can make substitutions.

Did you ever see that pincushion pattern from Martha Stewart (I believe it was her because really, who else would it be?) where you had to stuff it with something called emery, and you lost interest in making the pincushion because you didn't have any emery handy or know where to buy it so you just went and whipped up a grilled cheese instead and it was so good, you forgot all about your lack of emery? Emery is the stuff they put in some pincushions (like that little strawberry that's attached to the tomato kind) that sharpens your needles & pins. Well, thanks to Crafty Pod, we now know there's an alternative to emery: steel wool. Go have a look [link via Craft].

(Thanks to Google, I've found out which pincushion pattern it was and it's Martha's strawberry one. The first commenter shares where you can buy emery.)

I just discovered Fine Furious Life thanks to my friend Guava -- she linked to this recipe for Heretic's Shanghai Cold Ramen (which I want to try) but the Meatloaf Cupcakes With Mashed Potato Frosting caught my eye. How cute are they?!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Hope I Don't Screw It Up

Update #3: I took this out margin-left:25px and everything lined up but I think it looks squished together now.

Update #2: I'm sitting here, looking at the lay out page for my blog, sipping iced tea and wishing it was vodka. The right sidebar thingy is BELOW the entry thingy and I cannot figure out why. The html for this blog is EXACTLY the same as the code for Pip Stitch Junior, yet this one is not lined up the same way. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!

Update: I am beyond disgusted. How come I can put three columns on
this blog but not here???

I just realized the photo in my banner is wider than the . . . header width. Or something. I did not notice that until just now. I'll have to change it.

Speaking of blog changes, Sweet Bee added a left sidebar to her blog awhile ago so I asked her how she did that. She referred me to this post on Tips For New Bloggers (the instructions are very easy to understand). I used to play around with the html on my old blog and it was really just modifying an existing template so nothing major. I'd have to do the same thing if I wanted to add another sidebar to this blog so why am I so worried I will totally screw this one up in the process and then not be able to fix it?

I created a practice blog (Pip Stitch Junior, heh) and added a left sidebar to it. It seems to have turned out ok so I'm ready to take the add-another-sidebar plunge here.

And, yes, I know about downloading the template beforehand and I did that with Pip Stitch Junior but I'm afraid I'll never find the file again.

Anyway, I'm off to add a left sidebar. Let's hope I do not mess it up!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Calling All Stitchers

Update: Some of Niki's readers were getting pop up ads for a porn site when they visited her blog and she couldn't figure out how to stop it, so she just deleted the entire thing and will be starting over. How sad to lose everything you've blogged for two years. :(

Niki of Niki's Ventures is having a banner contest. She'd like you to stitch a cute banner for her blog to mark the second anniversary. You'll have until the end of the month to send her a picture of your work. And, the winner will receive a fabulous prize!

Cupcakes Acting Cute

Cakespy is having a cute book giveaway but the deadline to enter is today at noon (Pacific time) so it may be too late by the time you read this so you may as well just root for me to win. Thank you.

Monday, July 7, 2008

My Latest Finish

My most recent Saturday evening went something like this: I spent five hours reading a bunch of blogs and answering a few emails. Then I took a picture of the cookies I had been munching on all day.

Don't you wish you were me?

The cookies are the ginger cat ones from Trader Joe's. Usually, I just grab a few out of the container and pop them in my mouth without really looking at them. Now that I see them up close and personal in that picture, I realize they are not cute kitties at all. Good thing they taste good. (And, they are low fat.)

One of the cross stitch Yahoo groups I'm in recently held a stitch-a-long. I decided to do the Spring cottage from Les grilles de Maryse. It's a freebie chart (in English). Then I waited two months and didn't start it until Spring was officially over. I like how it turned out (except for the usual puckering along the seam to close up the opening in the little pillow). I used all the suggested floss colors and stitched it on Fiddler's 18 ct.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Update Time

#1 -- There was nothing good to be had at last weekend's parish (what the sign said) rummage sale, although I would have totally scored if I liked to knit with glow-in-the-dark orange and green yarn. Afterwards, my mom and I had a nice lunch at yet another Mexican restaurant here in town. Here's a review of it by someone else, complete with pictures. (Note to self: the next time you bring your camera with you while out & about, be sure to take it out of your purse and use it.)

#2 -- Did I have more than one update?

#3 -- Oh yeah, I did. Jazz, the Katrina Cocker Spaniel I mentioned the other day, was finally returned to her owner. An anonymous commenter left a link to this story and video. (Thank you!) The owner, Shalanda Augillard, was arrested (and later released) during the hand-off because of an outstanding failure to appear warrant for allegedly assaulting the woman who adopted Jazz. The police have known of Shalanda's whereabouts all along and could have picked her up at any time but they had to do it on that particular day? Like that wasn't orchestrated by the adopters' attorney. [eyeroll]

#4 -- In personal news: I don't know if anyone noticed but I edited my Blogger profile so that it no longer has that I am suffering from a degenerative foot condition. Why? Because it was misdiagnosed. Oops. Actually, I'm pretty happy about the mistake since I spent two months waiting for a referral to a foot surgeon, convinced I was going to end up unable to walk and in a wheel chair. At some point, I did fracture four bones in my foot, (probably when I fell and broke my knee last year, and not due to Charcot Foot as first thought by my doctor), and the bones were dislocated and have since healed that way, which explains my now deformed extremity. Between the gigantic bunion below my big toe and all the swelling (leftover from knee surgery), (and, yes, I curse that doctor on a daily basis), I cannot get a regular shoe to fit my right foot so now I have to have a pair custom made. Hey, maybe that means they won't be as ugly as some of those other orthopedic shoes out there. I wonder if they could whip me up a pair of Mary Janes. In red.

Ok, enough updating for now.

TipNut has another list of links to free apron patterns and tutorials!

You have got to go see the cool pincushions that won Excellence in Needle Arts Awards from Piecework Magazine. There's a link to the pdf with photos of winners for 2008 on that page, and also links to previous year's winners.

Check out all of the entries in the Feeling Stitchy banner contest. I think they should use them all and change them out every week.

Your probably already know but Pimp Stitch is now open and selling patterns. I love them all but my favorite is Made in the 80's because I have a thing about mix tapes.

There are several new free cross stitch charts at Brooke's Books. Go to the freebie page and scroll down to the photos of Butterfly Wings and Land That I love. Brooke has also released the M is for Measure block for her Stitcher's Alphabet. Clicking the pictures will take you to the charts. To keep up with her new releases, check out Brooke's blog, and for access to exclusive freebies, join the Brooke's Books Interactive Yahoo group.

Over at Stitch Pink is an x-stitch chart for a breast cancer awareness biscornu called Be Aware. And, there are charts for two of Mary Engelbreit's Mini Flower Pots on her web site. And, more of her craft freebies here.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Fourth of July

Here's a picture of my dog Sophie from a few years ago. I guess I added the hat because it was Independence Day but I have no idea why the background is green. This is a perfect example why I don't do graphics.

Happy Fourth of July!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I Have To Say Something

Am I the only one who looks at her sitemeter and says "Damn, if only I had a job at the State Department, I, too, could Google 'free redwork patterns' all the live long day"?

Note to you at the CDC: any word on what caused that salmonella?

(If you use something like Bloglines or Google Reader and I edit an already published post, does that show up as a new entry? My apologies if it does.)