Saturday, November 29, 2008

What Everybody Wants (Apparently)

Lately, I've noticed there's a search term that has been bringing lots of people to my blog. Apparently, everybody is looking for one of these items this holiday season. What is it?

puppy's first christmas ornament

And, I feel bad for posting that now because people will get this entry as a hit and click it, only to find nothing here that has to do with puppies or ornaments.

Sorry about that.

Good luck in your quest. I hope you soon find what you're looking for. (You too, Bono.)

(Can you tell I don't have any links or projects to share tonight? Damn you, Facebook.)

A Link To Some Vintage Images

Karen is an artist who creates altered books and collage art. She has a collection of public domain images and shares them on her Karen's Whimsy website. There are vintage images of animals, holidays, flowers. angels, fashion -- lots of great stuff! [Link via Altered Art Junkies]

Friday, November 28, 2008

More Printable Gift Tags

Sublime Sisters has a set of printable Christmas tags that are really cute.

And, over at Bella Dia is a huge list of links to free gift tags. Score!

Edited To Add: Sublime Sisters is now Sibling Craftery and the Christmas tags are now here.

Facebook Groups

I found an apron group on Facebook with 54 members. I knew four of them through reading their blogs. It's a small world after all.

Here are a few Facebook groups you crafty types might be interested in joining. I'm not sure if a direct link will work so go log in and then do a search on them.
I love Sublime Stitching!!!
Tie One apron, of course!
I'm Bringing Aprons Back

Let me know if you know of any others. Thanks.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving, Y'all (now with video)

I don't have a nice turkey picture so here's one of a Kewpie with an axe.

Since it's Thanksgiving, let me tell you what I am thankful for: all the amazing and fantastic bloggers I have gotten to know over the past year. I've had a pretty craptastic past 18 months and I cannot imagine how I would have gotten through it without your kind comments and emails, and also with the words on your blogs. I am so very glad to have found you all. And, to those generous and creative types who give away free patterns and explain how to make things, you have saved my sanity by giving me something to do with my needle & thread. Thank you, all, for being there and have a Happy Thanksgiving!!

I had to add this hilarious video that Kellie had on her facebook.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Links For Last Friday's Finishes

I wanted to link to the patterns & tutorials I used to make the things in the photo on Friday's post. But, first, a few other links.

Anne at Green Jello is sharing her holiday embroidery patterns and boy, are they really cute. I am definitely going to stitch the sugar plum fairies.

Jo the Crafty Stitcher is sharing instructions to make tags out of muslin and her cute embroidery designs. I really love the bird.

Over at The Floss Box, Emily posted some Xmas ornament patterns to use for embroidery projects.

And, you have to check out Jenn's extensive floss dyeing tutorial on her blog, Sweet Pea Stitches. I have to wait on doing this but I really would like to give it a try after the holidays.

I made this fabric flower back in June and it was on my dog's collar for awhile but I wasn't crazy about my sewing. So I decided to take it apart and put it back together. I also added a different button and a pinback so now I can wear it on my sweater. The material is from a sheet I have had for years but never used. Instructions for making the fabric flower can be found at Pink Paper Peppermints.

flower pin

I wasn't happy with the hat I made for this snowman months ago and I finally got around to making him another one last week so that counts as a finish. You can find the pattern at Runo's site.

Well, I thought he was finished. I just realized I forgot to give Frosty some buttons. Oops.

felt snowman

One of the monthly themes for the Christmas Ornament Stitch-A-Long for September was penguins. So that's what I made. The chart for this cute little guy is from It's Daffy Cat. I had previously finished all the cross stitching on the Nativity ornament (one of the themes for May) but didn't back it and stuff it until last week. The last time I checked, the free pattern was no longer available.


I love this peony. I wish I had some pretty wool felt in pink or even white but I only have brown and black so I just used the craft kind. I turned my peony into a pin but the instructions will show you how to attach it to a hairband. You can find the tutorial at Yoonie At Home.

felt peony pin

Here's another card I made, again using the Chi Chi Fever pattern from Sublime Stitching. I messed up his head and I don't really like the small stitches I took but oh well.


Have you been to Tricia Rennea's blog yet? (I believe I found it through a link on One Pretty Thing.) There is so much good stuff there, including the pattern for her Maddie Bird. I made this one last night. I did the tail a little differently since I didn't have any red or white yarn (in the instructions, the yarn tail looks like a heart to me so I just cut one out and sewed it on). I am not happy with where I stitched the wing -- I wish I had put it a little lower -- but take a look at that! I actually used a chain stitch on that wing! How unlike me! I think my blanket stitching is getting better too. Well, except for that knot near her right foot. Anyway, I plan to make at least one more Maddie Bird this week. I also would like to make Tricia's mittens. Now, go see all of her amazing and fun work. And, if you have any trouble printing things, just email her and she will send you the pattern.

felt bird

Monday, November 24, 2008

Blue Monday: Go, Lil Pumpy

Since November is Diabetes Awareness Month and today is Blue Monday, I thought I would share some photos of the blue device in my bra that helps me control my blood sugar: my insulin pump. In real life, my pump does not have a name (I REFUSE TO GIVE IT ONE) but today it will be known as Lil Pumpy because A) it gives me a title for this entry and B) it made Kellie laugh last time I used it.

I've had type 1 diabetes for over 30 years, and after giving myself daily insulin injections for most of that time, I decided to go on an insulin pump about a year ago.

Meet Lil Pumpy. Notice how he/she/it is blue. Perfect for Blue Monday.

insulin pump

I put the pump on a hankie with blue flowers on but it was so sheer, you can see the pink gingham sheet underneath it.

The pump continually gives me very small amounts of insulin and that keeps my blood sugar on an even level. When it's time to eat, I can set the pump to deliver an extra dose of insulin to cover the amount of carbohydrates in my food, which is kind of how a pancreas works in a person without diabetes.

Usually, I wear the pump inside my bra, but I didn't want to show off my cleavage today so I clipped it to the pocket of my jeans.

Insulin pump in pocket

See the tubing coming out of the pump? At the opposite end of that is a super thin needle that I insert under my skin (usually in my stomach but there are other places I can put it) using this springloaded gizmo I have. I can barely feel it going in.

I disconnect the pump when I take a shower but other than that, it's attached to me all the time. Something I'm still not totally used to, but it's not all that bad. I'm really pretty happy with my pump and wish I hadn't waited so long to get one. It has changed how I care for my diabetes because it makes it so convenient to take insulin. There's no longer the hassle of filling up syringes and finding a place to shoot up. (It's never happened to me but I've always heard stories from other diabetics about taking a shot in a public restroom and being accused of doing drugs.) Nowadays, I just push a few buttons and easily get my insulin.

When I was ready to take these pictures, I went looking for some more blue items to add. Let's pretend Lil Pumpy enjoys wearing a miniature sombrero while working hard to keep my blood sugar under control. Go, Lil Pumpito!

My insulin pump

Be sure to see who else is joining Blue Monday hosted by Smiling Sally.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Yes, I'm Addicted To Facebook

Thanks to Jessica, I found Sublime Stitching on Facebook.

I also found my sister. If she turns down my friend request, I might have to beat her up.

And, then you know what I did? Yes, I admit it. I looked up ex-boyfriends. Just shoot me.

I hope there isn't a counter of some kind that keeps track of how many times an hour I go there.

Photo Tag

Penny did not tag me for this but I saw it on her blog and thought it would be fun.

Here are the rules:

Find the 6th folder in your photos folder and then the 6th photo in it.
Post it on your blog.
Tag 5 others, leave a comment to let them know they’ve been tagged.

Here's the sixth photo in the sixth folder.

Those are some little dog figures I have. I think I added the numbers so I could give a description for each one when I posted the picture to my blog, which I never did.

1. A Poodle type dog in a basket that I got at the antique store in town. (In town? Suddenly, I'm Laura Ingalls. Hitch up the wagon, Pa.) The lady who rang up the sale told me to never wash it because it would disintegrate in water. I wish I could remember what she said it was made from.

2. The pup in the party hat came from a flea market and is old. Uh, I mean vintage.

3. That's Doodledog, who belongs to the Kewpies. He came from an internet seller a few years back and is not old.

4. A pair of salt & pepper shakers also from the local antique shop. Old.

5. Mary Engelbreit Scottie and Westie salt & pepper shakers. Not old.

6. That little white dog with the bell cost me two bucks on eBay. I found it by searching on Shih Tzu. It's not a Tzu but it is cute.

I'm not going to tag anyone to do this one but I hope you will join in. Please let me know if you do so I can come and see your photo.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Finished For Friday: Whipping Stuff Out

I just sat down at my computer to check my Facebook email and suddenly remembered it was Friday so I sprinted down the hall to grab my camera and the stuff I finished this week so I could post it for Finished for Friday, and took eight pictures, all of which were out of focus. The best one is below.

The felt snowman was done months ago but his hat was lop-sided so I made a new one last night. This one is lop-sided too but appears straight from a certain angle and that works for me. The penguin is for for one of the monthly SALs I've neglected, and you've seen the nativity one in its pre-ornament stage. I've also previously posted the yellow flower too, when it was attached to my dog's collar. She didn't appreciate it very much so I took it back and it's now become a pin for me. The red peony is also a pin. I'll post links to the patterns and charts I used later this weekend, and hopefully take some better pictures too. I just wanted to get this up while it was still Friday on the East coast.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

But I Will Not Twitter

The other night, I was kind of bored so I reactivated my Facebook account. I had joined last year at the request of a friend but didn't see the point of being there and deleted inactivated my account. I spent some time there again, checking out groups and looking for people I know. I plugged my AOL address book in and there were names coming up that I didn't even recognize. I think most of them were dog rescue-related but then again who knows. At least none of them are dead (see Tuesday's post). And, I found a few of you on there but felt a little stalker-ish sending a friend request, and there's a good chance you probably wouldn't know who I was anyway.

(By the way, there are ads on Facebook on the right-hand side, and I swear 99% of the ones I saw had to do with Rachael Ray. I would click another link and a new page would open and there would be another picture of her. It's as if Facebook knows just how much she annoys me and is doing this just to drive me insane.)

I still don't see the point of Facebook (maybe I am just anti-social) so can someone please let me in on what I can do there. (Looking up some guy I had a crush on in high school is so 1998.)

It's A Wonder People Will Eat My Food

Look at the cake in this post on Hey Lucy.

Now, look at mine.

Can I just say it tastes way better than it looks? It does, believe me.

It's a Ginger Pear Upside-Down Cake and you can find the recipe here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Lumpy And Oddly Shaped

Has anyone made one of the Little House Ornaments from Pimp Stitch? I attempted to make one earlier tonight and everything was fine until I stuffed it. It was lumpy and oddly-shaped and didn't look like a little house anymore. I know it was due to my uneven hand sewing. I was so disappointed. But, I am going to try it again and maybe use all felt this time since I do better with sewing that.

Penny at Mind Wanderings tagged me to share six random things about myself. I've done this before but here are six new ones:

1. My hand sewing is really awful.

2. I would rather hang out with a bunch of 2 yr olds in a sandbox than a group of adults at a cocktail party.

3. I never get invited to cocktail parties.

4. I have the email addresses of four people who have passed away in my address book. I can't delete them for some reason.

5. I am a bundle o' fun. (I'm not going to let that one die.)

6. Rachael Ray gets on my nerves. Explanation below.

Last week, I was going through my notebook of saved recipes from websites, looking for something different to make for dinner, when I came across one of Rachael Ray's called Go Oregonian! Oregon Style Pork Chops with Pinot Noir and Cranberries, Oregon Hash with Wild Mushrooms, Greens, Beets, Hazelnuts and Blue Cheese, Charred Whole Bread with Butter and Chives.

Still there? I bet I could have that meal on the table by the time you finish reading the title.

Why does she feel the need to list just about every ingredient as part of the name of her recipe? Does she not have an editor? Am I the only one who finds this annoying?

A couple of years ago, I made Go Oregonian! Oregon Style Pork Chops with Pinot Noir and Cranberries, Oregon Hash with Wild Mushrooms, Greens, Beets, Hazelnuts and Blue Cheese, Charred Whole Bread with Butter and Chives for my mom and myself, and we both enjoyed it. Except I left out the hazelnuts and we skipped the charred bread. So, technically we had Go Oregonian! Oregon Style Pork Chops with Pinot Noir and Cranberries, Oregon Hash with Wild Mushrooms, Greens, Beets, and Blue Cheese. You can find the recipe here. If you decide to print it out, make sure you have lots of paper in your printer. The title alone will take up three pages.

I ended up making another Rachael recipe that night for dinner: Chicken Sausage, Pepper and Onion Pasta Fake-Bake. That was pretty good too. I call my version Italian Sausage made with Pork, Pepper and Onion Pasta diced because I didn't have crushed tomatoes what do I do with 3/4 cup leftover ricotta cheese Fake-Bake though.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Barbara's Bundle O' Fun Tutorials

Do you have a bunch of vintage snowmen and pixie heads lying around the house? Not sure what to do with them? Well, the lovely and talented Barbara at Oodles and oodles has posted a couple of tutorials for some fun holiday projects using those heads. The first one is for turning pixie stems (aka heads) into cute little pixie people, and the second is for making an adorable snowman from a snowman pick. (Guess which body part is on the pick.)

Speaking of projects, the other night I came across two different blogs with a long list of links to online tutorials. That's the kind of thing I would do here if I were more organized but I'm not so thank you to Meika and to The Princess & The Monkey for posting their lists.

And, thanks to Barbara and her box of pipe cleaners, I now know what I want written on my tombstone: "She was a bundle o' fun." Because I may not be organized but I am fun. Or was.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Smoky Saturday Sky

Up until just a little while ago, the skies here were blue but now we can see smoke in the distance. There aren't any fires close by us so I'm guessing it's from the Corona fire which is about 45 miles away. Click the picture to see it larger.

I can't believe I haven't blogged since Sunday even though I signed up for Book Week at Green Jello. I am so sorry I missed that. I thought my problem was keeping up with everybody else's blogs, not adding to my own, but I just haven't been in the mood to post anything.

The other night when I felt like I was drowning in blogs, I decided to turn off the computer and go make something quick. Thank you, Sharon at It's Daffy Cat, for this cute lil penguin freebie. That was exactly what I was looking for, or so I thought. I did all the cross stitching and then abandoned the poor little guy. He may never become an ornament now. I also began working on a little snowman and he, too, has been ditched for the time-being.

Last weekend, I stitched up two more cards and was in such a hurry to get them into envelopes and then into the mailbox, that I forgot to take pictures of them so I didn't have anything to show for Finished for Friday. But, if I did have pictures, well, you would be swooning over my SIMPLY GORGEOUS cards. You would have been awestruck by my amazing creativity and proclaim me the most incredibly talented person to exist on the planet.

(Just play along.)

I'm amazed at how much attention the future White House dog is getting but it certainly can't hurt and maybe it will lead to more shelter dogs being adopted.

From Adopt-A-Pet, formerly 1-800-Save-A-Pet: is working with it's 6,500 partner animal shelters to announce the launch of, a fun campaign site where you can add your name to an open letter telling our next President, "Yes you can!" (adopt, that is). Animal shelters are full of poodles, schnauzers, and other purebreds and mixes that have low-dander hair. Please join the movement, sign the letter, and then forward a link to all your friends! A copy of the letter and all the signatures will be delivered directly to the White House.

I took a quiz from Martha Stewart and found out which Thanksgiving side dish I was. Because if ever there was a dilemma that kept me awake at night, it was whether I was Stuffing or Green Bean Casserole. Turns out I am Mashed Potatoes and Gravy. Who knew?

You are undoubtedly Mashed Potatoes and Gravy. You find comfort in familiarity and like things that go together. Milk and cookies. Bacon and eggs. Where would mashed potatoes be without the gravy? This Thanksgiving, your plate is sure to feature this classic combo.

If you're curious to know which side dish you are, you can take Martha's quiz to find out.

I'm going back to Firewatch November 2008. We still don't have anything burning near us but the street above mine is bordered by a hill loaded with brush and I always worry when we have winds and low humidity. My prayers and thoughts go out to those who had to evacuate their homes due to the fires and all of the firefighters who put their lives on the line to save our homes. Stay safe.

View Larger Map

Monday, November 10, 2008

National Tie One On Day

I've added a button in the right sidebar for National Tie One On Day which is the day before Thanksgiving. This campaign was started by EllynAnne Geisel, author of The Apron Book. From her Apron Memories blog:

Participation in National Tie One On Day is simple - on the day before Thanksgiving, pause in the preparation of your own bounty, wrap a loaf of bread or other baked good in an apron, tuck a prayer or note of encouragement in the pocket, and tie one apron, of course! and deliver the wrapped bundle to someone in need of spiritual or physical sustenance.

EllynAnne will also be holding giveaways for aprons and books. You can read more about National Tie One On Day here.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Way Too Many Blogs

I read way too many blogs.

I'm going through what I consider my favorites now and catching up on posts about the election, and in some cases, Halloween.

I was recently given two blog awards and have put off posting about them because I know I have to decide who to pass them on to, and where that was once a fun thing to do, now I see it as a chore because I'm overwhelmed by choices.

I skip participating in Vintage Thingies Thursday and Blue Monday because I feel obligated to check out everybody else's blog and I know I won't always have the time.

I will leave comments on a blog and the blogger will email me a response and I will let it sit there for a month (or five) because I am too busy reading blogs to answer my email.

I miss giveaways because by the time I read about them, it's too late to enter.

This is insane.

And, ridiculous.

And, sad to say, it isn't as fun as it used to be.

P.S. People who only blog once or twice a week rule.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Finished For Friday -- I Got Nothing But Links

Be sure to check the previous post for a link to Loralynn's Thanksgiving giveaway (apron alert!) and see the pretty biscornu she sent me.

Since today is Friday, I hope you'll participate in Finished for Friday over at Lit and Laundry and share any projects you've been able to complete this week. Sadly, the only thing I've finished this week was my bag of candy corn.

But I do have some links to share.

Check out these cute bookplates with vintage animal designs from Sweet Jessie [link via One Pretty Thing].

Not sure how I missed it but a couple of weeks ago Tip Nut had a list of twenty free softie patterns and tutorials, including this alpaca stuffie from The Shishi Girl.

Zakka Life is sharing her Cute as a Button ornament and boy, is it ever so cute!

There's a new cross stitch freebie called Jingle Sparkle Joy at Midsummer Night Musings that I just love and hope to start this week.

You have to see the super cute Tree Family embroidery pattern at Nini Makes. Joanie is also having a giveaway for some cool stash so go leave her some comments before November 17th.

I'm going to catch on some blog reading this weekend so have a good one!

(Did you notice I used cute four times in this post? I'm shooting for five next time.)

Loralynn's Thanksgiving Giveaway

Before I get to the giveaway, I wanted you to see the felt biscornu that Loralynn sent me as awhile ago (and I cannot believe I keep forgetting to share it). She had posted a photo of the biscornu on her blog and I thought it was the neatest thing. I love biscornus (biscorni?) anyway but this one was special because it wasn't cross stitched. The design was embroidered on to felt which I thought was really cool. She was sneaky and got my address by telling me she wanted to send me a card. I was so surprised when I opened my "card" to find the biscornu instead.

This is the top. Or maybe it's the bottom. I love the button.

Felt biscornu top

This is the flipside. Look at the pretty beads and perfect chain stitch. I wish mine looked that good!

Biscornu detail

And, here's a blurry picture of the side so you can see how she attached the two pieces.

Felt biscornu bottom

Isn't it great? Thank you so much for the biscornu, Loralynn! I love it!

On to her giveaway . . .

Loralynn is having a Thanksgiving giveaway for a cute apron she made that would be perfect to wear on Turkey Day and a matching potholder. She'll pick a winner on November 12th so go leave her some comments.

I really like her tradition of making a Thanksgiving tree:

The second thing we do is prepare a Thanksgiving tree. It simply consists of an ice bucket and an interesting twig from outside. I added fall colored flowers to the base for interest. We cut out leaf shapes from fall colored cardstock, enough for there to be at least two for each person. I lay these on the table in front of the "tree." Everyone is required...yes, I said write on two leaves, two different things they are thankful for. This has to be done before dinner is served. After dinner, while still at the table, we read what we have written and then hang the leaf on the tree. It was awesome last year! We got everything from "I am thankful for my video games" to "I am thankful to be alive" (my Dad is a heartattack/bypass survivor). If you don't do something like this in your family, you should try it. It costs very little and is a great way to bring the family together while counting our blessings.

And, Anne at Green Jello does something very similar: a gratitude tree.

Great idea, ladies!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Have You Never Been Mellow

About five years ago, Uncle Bob asked his readers to come up with their Fifteen Favorite Mellow Tunes. I couldn't get Olivia Newton-John's voice out of my head but I managed to come up with a list and I posted it to my (old) blog.

1. Sadly Beautiful -- The Replacements
2. Perfect Circle -- Rem
3. Skyway -- the Replacements
4. Pecan Pie -- Golden Smog
5. Best of My Love -- The Eagles
6. Avenues -- Whiskeytown
7. My Drug Buddy -- Lemonheads
8. This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody) -- Talking Heads
9. Allison -- Elvis Costello
10. Rose Parade -- Elliott Smith
11. Passenger Side -- Wilco
12. Pale Blue Eyes -- Rem
13. Cowboy Junkies -- Sweet Jane
14. Dancing Barefoot -- Patti Smith or U2 or that Feelies version that I have on a flexi from some 80's zine
15. Running To Stand Still -- U2 (well, except for that middle verse where Bono is uh, ragin')

A couple of weeks later, I posted this on my (old) blog:

Wouldn't it be incredibly cool if somebody saw my list of Fifteen Favorite Mellow Tunes and made me a cd? And then she just mailed it to me without telling me so I was completely surprised to get it and when I opened the envelope, I didn't have my glasses on so I had trouble figuring out the words on the cd and all I could tell was that it said Patty and mellow and then I saw Pecan Pie and I realized what it was and I got so excited, I squealed and freaked out the blind dog.

My friend, Michelle, had downloaded every song on my list and then burned a cd for me, and I was so surprised and thrilled. She was even able to find live versions of some of the songs. I would have married her if we were both gay and she also gave me a nice ring. Seriously. Mix tapes cds have that effect on me.

After I moved a couple of years ago, I could not find the cd anywhere. It wasn't with my other cds, and I knew it wasn't in my car because I didn't have a cd player in there. I searched for it for awhile but eventually, I figured finding it was a lost cause and it was gone for good.

The other day, I decided to play something with my small boombox and guess what I found in the cd player? The cd from Michelle! We won't be able to get married now that Proposition 8 passed in California but I still absolutely love her for making me the best mix cd ever.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

My Rockin' The Vote Bunny

It hasn't gotten much media attention so you guys may not have heard but there's a kind of a big election today so don't forget to vote!

Voting bunny

The pattern is a freebie from Urban Threads. (And, yes, I messed up his hat.)

(Since it's 2 AM, can you tell I just about forgot to post my bunny?)

It has nothing to do with voting but I found a video of U2 doing "40" at Red Rocks in 1983. And, look what I found on Wikipedia regarding The Unforgettable Fire Tour: "It made for intense concerts in this instance, because it provided a very large but fully devoted audience, with fans standing on chairs for the entire performance and continuing "40" refrains long after the show was over." See? I told you.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Last One

And, that concludes my posting spree. I didn't want everything in one huge post so I did a bunch of them. So, I can take a week off from blogging now, right?

High Fidelity Meets Rockwiz Meme

I don't know who or what Rockwiz is but I saw this on Blog Portion (and stole her title) and knew it would be fun to do.

1. Your first musical idol.
The Partridge Family. We (the kids on my street) would play their records in the garage and pretend to be them. Kristin always wanted to be Keith. My sister and Lori would fight over being Tracy but my sister had a tambourine so she usually won out. And, I was always the mom. Just call me Shirley.

2. Your biggest musical shame/embarassment.
While packing up my stuff to move a few years ago, I got into a huff and threw away some of my records, including all my Elton John albums. I still can't believe I did that. Tossing out that Loverboy LP is one thing but getting rid of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road? That's just wrong.

3. Your special musical talent.
When I worked at Starbucks about a decade ago, my manager used to throw out band names so I could name all their members. He always got a kick out of it and would even have me perform in front of customers. I guess all those years of pouring over liner notes made an impression. I still try to do this now when I hear songs on the radio or on my iPod but I often draw a blank. Good thing they invented Google.

4. A musical thing you wouldn't do in public.
Kareoke -- as much as I love to sing, my voice is horrible and I wouldn't want to cause anyone's ears to bleed.

5. The last band you saw live.
Oh, boy. It's been awhile. I would have check old ticket stubs. I think it was Elliott Smith and he passed away in 2003. Looks like it was PJ Harvey and Grant Lee Buffalo in 1998. Wow, it has been a long time since I went to a show.

6. Favorite live musical experience.
Every Replacements show I ever went to, and U2 at the Forum the Sports Arena on The Unforgettable Fire Tour. We had 16th row seats and we stood on them the entire time (I kept thinking I was going to fall off), and this was back in the day when you only had to pay a scalper $38 a ticket to get good seats. I know someone who described the show as a religious experience. I wouldn't go that far but it was pretty good. At one point, Bono climbed from the stage all the way to the upper level of seats. When they were finished the encore, they left the stage one by one. and the whole time. the audience was singing "40" and kept it up even after they were all gone.

7. If you could see any band/musician live tomorrow, who would it be?
Frank Sinatra but in his younger days.

Guess who my favorite band of all time is. These are just some of the ticket stubs I still have. And, yes there is one for a show in NYC. It was their final tour and I had the chance to fly across the country and go, so I did.

Good Thing She Doesn't Have A Clown Too

You have to check out Barbara's fabulous vintage cupcake pick collection. Try not to be creeped out by that leprechaun.

Printable Gift Tags And Labels

I was going through my list of saved links and found a couple of blogs with gift tags you can download and print.

The mailing label printables at Elliphantom Knits are a super adorable octopus and an elephant. They make me want to mail some packages right now!

Last year at Angry Chicken, you could find gift tags for your holiday presents. My favorite is still "I made this, just so you know. So don't say anything mean about it." (I should use one that now!)

It seems like everybody is linking to the Four Seasons Gift Tags from Fog And Thistle. (I saw it at One Pretty Thing first.)

Not only did LollyChops share her bird tags for the holidays, she also explains how you can attach the tag to her gifts in a jar, and includes the recipe.

And, Handmade Holidays also has some gift tags you can download and print for gifts this year.

The Diabetes Ornament Tree

Hey! I found a crafty diabetes-related project, and no, it's not gray.

Every year, The Busy Needle, a shop in Rogers, Arkansas, accepts handmade ornaments for their tree and sells them to raise money for local diabetes charities. In 2007, they raised $3400. Belinda of Blue Ribbon Designs says the money was used to buy medication and testing supplies.

From The Busy Needle's website:

Our goal each year is to increase last year's total. It's a huge effort but we give it our best shot. Somehow, we usually manage to pull it out in the end. We accept any type of ornament as long as it is hand-made. We have received all types of needlearts (cross stitch, crochet, smocking, you name it)! You would be amazed at the variety of ornaments we receive and what people choose. Send us your hand-made treasures. We welcome all your beautiful creations.

Ever since I first read about this on Cyberstitchers' charity page, I have been meaning to make them an ornament or two, but have yet to do it. But I'm going to start an ornament for the tree this week. Would anybody else like to join me?

For more information on The Diabetes Ornament Tree, go to their website.

Stitch A Penguin Or Gnome

There are some cute embroidery patterns of two penguins, a gnome and a happy Spring scene at Sublime Sisters [link via Craft Gossip].

And, there's a cross stitch penguin freebie from Sharon at It's Daffycat. He's wearing a Santa hat and holding a present. I must stitch him!

What To Do With Leftover Halloween Candy

Not sure what to do with your leftover Halloween candy? You can find two great ideas on Alpha Mom, an advent calendar and a tree decorated with cute little candy packages.

And, for an added bonus, there are instructions on making a turkey pinata [link via Craft].

A Very Pretty Wreath To Make

Looking at this wreath makes me so happy [link via Jane's Apron].

No doubt the pretty fabric and cute buttons play a huge role in why I love it. Had Beth used bright orange polyester, I wouldn't consider it drool worthy at all. Then again, I've seen some of her other work and I probably would love something she made with orange polyester.

Click the yellow rectangle for instructions to make the wreath.

And, check out Beth's Etsy shop to see her darling pincushions. (Scottie dog alert!)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

No, Really. What Is She Wearing?

And, let me say this before anyone thinks I'm just picking on Republicans: I would post this picture even if she were my own mother. Ahem. I know What Not To Wear. (I also pray that Stacy & Clinton are never in the area, secretly filming me.)

Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures
see Sarah Palin pictures

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Made With Real Honey (I need to stop editing this)

Look what
the Candy Corn Fairy*
left me on

Since this is the first day of Diabetes Awareness Month, I thought I would encourage you all to make something the color that goes with diabetes, kind of like how pink is for breast cancer. Except I don't even know if there is a color for diabetes. (That petition linked in the right sidebar wants Google to use a blue doodle on World Diabetes Day but is blue the official color for diabetes? I have no clue.) Instead, I'll just share a fun diabetic fact: Halle Berry is a whack job when it comes to diabetes and you should never pay attention to anything she has to say about the disease.

Ok, that's a tad harsh. But she did leave many of us confused by statements she made regarding her diabetes last year. For years, she had said she had Type 1 diabetes, but then later claimed she was able to wean herself off insulin due to a change in diet and was now a Type 2. From Contact Music:

Pregnant HALLE BERRY is winning her battle with diabetes, thanks to a healthy diet and good living. The actress was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes after she passed out while shooting a TV show called Living Dolls when she first arrived in Hollywood. But the disease has now dropped to Type 2 diabetes because Berry is no longer "insulin dependent". She says, "I've managed to ween myself off insulin, so now I like to put myself in the Type 2 category."

If only it were that easy.

When you have Type 1, the cells in your pancreas that produce insulin are attacked and destroyed by your own immune system (they haven't yet figured out why that happens) and it's irreversible. No insulin means you die. This is why Type 1's HAVE to take insulin, either by injection or via a pump. So, there is no way a Type 1 would be able to completely stop taking insulin and still live. Eventually, they would die of starvation, which is what happened to diabetics in the days before they discovered insulin. Halle was either misdiagnosed years ago or just confused about which type she had. (Type 2 diabetics are still producing insulin. When you have Type 2, your pancreas doesn't make enough of the hormone or your body can't use what is being produced, so you're put on medication that stimulates insulin production or helps your body use what you do have. Sometimes, Type 2's are put on insulin and can then be taken off of it at some point.)

And, please don't put on your Diabetes Cop uniform and yell at the diabetic girl for eating candy corn. It's not something I do every day, for one thing. Also, I know how to figure out how much insulin I need for the sugar in the candy. One serving of candy corn (22 pieces, egads!) contains 36 grams of carbohydrates. The thought of eating 22 pieces at one sitting gags me, but last October, I would have half that or 5 or 6, and then set my pump to give me a dose of insulin according to how many cards were in that amount. I had just gone on the pump and was counting every single carbohydrate I popped into my mouth. It paid off too. There's a blood test that can measure your average blood sugar for the previous three months, and I had one in December that showed my blood sugar was in good control last September, October, and November.

That concludes our medical lesson for the day.

Hmm. According to this site, gray is the color for diabetes. It's also the color for brain cancer and asthma. Another site says gray is also for allergies and to end sex trafficking & slavery in the UK.

Um, ok. Forget I googled that. Go make whatever you want in any color you want: a green felt pancreas, an embroidered syringe in burnt sienna colored floss, a life sized Halle Berry sculpted out of pink Playdough.

I've edited this entry a bunch of times and Sally's comments have reminded me that I forgot to add something back in. I have Type 1 diabetes, which is also known as insulin dependent diabetes. I cannot believe I didn't mention that, especially in light of the Halle Berry story. Now, it probably makes more sense why she could not have stopped taking her shots if she had IDDM (insulin dependent diabetes mellitus). This type used to be known as juvenile diabetes because it was usually children who were diagnosed with it, but it can develop at any age. Meanwhile, Type 2 was called adult-onset diabetes or NIDDM (non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus) because older adults were affected, but that isn't always the case. Unfortunately, these days, more and more children are being diagnosed with Type 2 because of their sedentary lifestyles.

And, Norma? I was thinking a rainbow bracelet would work for me since I would support a variety of causes: diabetes, breast cancer, animal rescue and AIDS awareness, people-with-mousy-brown-hair-who-add-highlights-thanks-to-L'Oreal-because-they're-worth-it, women-born-in-Philadelphia-who-cannot-stand-Sarah-Jessica-Parker, fans-of-Eric-Cartman-who-also-eat-Marie Callender's pot-pies are just a few, but the rainbow bracelet is already for Gay Pride. Dang.

I apologize for making fun of anyone who wears a bracelet or sports a ribbon for a certain cause but I cannot believe so many issues have been assigned a color. (This from a person who sees nothing wrong with patron saints for unattractive people, hairdressers, fireworks, television and notaries.)

*That would be my sister, Susan. Thanks, Susan!