Monday, December 21, 2009

Digging out

Here I am again! I survived the storm but it will be a while before all the snow is gone. The final tally was *drum roll please* 21 inches! It was a record for the month of December in the state of Maryland, and in one storm we beat the average annual precipitation amount. Now the next few days will be a challenge!

Some folks from northern regions was nothing! We deal with that all winter long and find ways to enjoy the snow. Well...that's all well and good if you live where there is plenty of equipment and money set aside to deal with such a large snowfall. But here in the mid-Atlantic regions we do not have the resources. Therefore a large storm like this leaves us incapacitated for a much longer time. Not to mention that most folks here don't know how to drive in the snow. I grew up in northern New York and cut my driving teeth on ice and snow. It's the other maniacs out there that don't have those skills I worry about! LOL I was the second person on our street to venture out yesterday and though the plow had
made one pass down our street, I pretty much had to cut my own path out to the main road which still had packed snow. I only live 4 miles from work, but I was shaking by the time I got there from the drive. I saw a lot of cars in the ditches along the way.

The weather is supposed to warm up during the day and refreeze at night for the next few days and then Christmas eve we are supposed to get rain. I'm dreading the drive to work today. I worked 8 hours yesterday and will work 10 hour days the next three. Thankfully Christmas Eve we will close early. My boss did run out and pick up someone to come in and help. She's a college student who just finished up her semester and will be able to help over the Christmas break. She finished up a jersey I had already stitched down and I was so thankful! I've done quite a few now and still have a couple more, but with the extra help now I think we'll be in good shape to get things done by Christmas. Even with the help I'm still half a day behind. This will be a Christmas to remember! LOL

Here are some shots of the aftermath. Of course, DS had to shovel snow in his shorts. I swear one day we'll be hauled into court for child neglect. He seems to think he's invincible, but what 14 year old doesn't?

Hee hee, I forgot to mention that DS went to his first "senior" party last Friday. DS is a freshman in high school and was a member of the marching band. He made friends with the drum major and other members of the band. She invited him to her birthday party. I give my son a lot of credit, because he took his time deciding whether or not to attend this party. He took the time to find out if her parents would be there, if there were other kids his age attending, then talked to us before making a decision. Of course we also talked to her parents. I'm pretty impressed with my son...and not just because he's my son...well maybe a little LOL I've always liked his choice of friends and he is considerate of us when he makes decisions like this one, finding out all the facts before he asked permission. My baby is growing up!

On that note, I'll be heading upstairs to get ready to battle another day in the trenches. *sigh* I don't want Christmas to be over, but I'll be glad when all this work is done and I can relax. Everyone has asked for the weekend after Christmas off (including me) but since I've done the majority of work, I think I should get the weekend off...what do you think? Shall I give you the work e-mail address and you can flood my bosses e-mail with your responses? Just kidding, my boss would not be happy, and we can't have an unhappy boss! LOL Off I go!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

2009 Blizzard!

It's a snow day!

I got up at 6 AM, fixed a hearty breakfast, watched the weather reports, got myself ready for work, shoveled the sidewalk, cleaned off my van and called my boss. He was doing the same thing (imagine that!). He asked me to wait before I left because he wanted to
see what it was like out there, then called me back and told me to take the day off! So, I went back to bed LOL In a way I'm very relieved! In a way I'm scared. I didn't get as much work done yesterday as I would have liked and I know it will be waiting for me when I go back tomorrow. Hopefully we'll have been dug out by then. The snow is still falling (last count was 16 inches at 3PM) and is supposed to continue until 6AM tomorrow morning. I've got some pictures taken around 3 to show you what's up.

Well, since I couldn't go to work, I decided to work on my Camelot Sampler. It's coming along, though not as quickly as I would like. I think there will be some down time after Christmas so hopefully it'll move along more quickly then. I'm dying inside because though I love working on this piece, there was another I was hoping to have as my New Year start. I showed pictures of it before, but it's Thea Gouverneur's pattern "London". Ah well, it will have to wait because the wedding won't!

Ok, just wanted to post something since I had a free day, now I'm off to stitch! Hope everyone is safe and warm wherever you are!


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Tis the Season


There is so much going on I don't know where to start, so I'll start with a very sweet surprise! Dawn, a sweet friend from one of the yahoo groups I belong to sent me a package all the way from England. I thought she was sending a stamp album but that wasn't all she sent! I can't thank you enough, Dawn!!! You made my day!! Just take a look...

Dawn, you'll be pleased to know that your ornament is the first one on the tree. We set our tree up the day after Thanksgiving, added the lights, garland and the tree topper and that's as far as we got. I haven't had a chance to add any ornaments so yours was the first one on the tree. Here's the picture to prove it! LOL

My life is so chaotic right now I can't begin to tell you! It has suddenly gone crazy at work. People are coming out of the woodwork to begin to get things framed. Most of the crafts stores in the area have stopped taking Christmas orders, so they have begun to pour through our doors. My boss has begun advertising that we can still deliver for Christmas and if it's within our power, will do so until Christmas eve. Right now I'm the only one preparing things for framing and I'm hard pressed to keep up! Can you believe there are people walking into the shop asking for mats to be cut and popped into ready made frames while they wait? There are times I wish I had magical powers LOL!! The other three employees are having "issues". One was in a car accident last week and asked to take a few days off, another has injured her arm (dislocated shoulder) and can't do any fitting, the third is an older gentleman and only works about 8 hours a week so can't help much with the immense work load. The pressure is starting to get to me, but I just try to stay focused and get as much done as I can. This past Saturday my boss went out of town to a football game and everyone else decided they needed most of the day off, I was alone in the store for 5 hours trying to take orders, prepare some things for framing, popping things into ready made frames, and answering the phone. Thankfully I have today off and that's why you're hearing from me. I'll have one day off this week. I don't know what the week after that is going to be like, but hopefully I'll have the weekend after Christmas off...but I heard yesterday that one of the employees is going to ask for the entire week after Christmas off...mind you this is the one who works the least in the shop....*sigh* I'm tired just thinking about it! LOL This may be the last time you hear from me until after Christmas. So on that note....Merry Christmas to all and may you enjoy many blessings in the coming New Year!


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

First Knight!


Just finished the first knight in the joust scene so thought I would post a picture. As soon as I'm done here I'm going to start on the second knight. I'm amazed at how far I've come in such a short time, I'm so thankful I have a day off now and then that I can devote to working on this project.

I soooooooooo needed this day off, since I've put in some long hours at the store lately. I'm also thankful that we've been able to keep up with the workload and haven't fallen behind. It's a challenge daily as we are getting busier and busier. I think Michaels has stopped taking orders for Christmas delivery so I know we're going to get a surge soon of last minute projects for framing. Yesterday our due date was falling on the 19th, so today the due date will fall on the 20th and if I know my boss he'll be turning back the due date soon so we'll begin to have even more projects due each day. I wonder what my schedule is going to look like next week? LOL I'm dreading the next few weeks!! I wish I could take pictures to show you some of the interesting things I've been framing lately. It's such a cultural melting pot here near the nation's capital and we get the most interesting things to frame. Yesterday I worked on a shadowbox for a retiring police officer. When I get back I'll have a few sports jerseys to frame. I really do love my job!

DS has been researching colleges he would like to attend. Last I heard he is planning on attending one that is near enough that he can commute from home. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? I'm sure he should have some independence, but it sure would lower the cost of his college to live at home. He's also stressing over his grade point average which is near 3.9. He's wise to keep an eye on that as he's looking for his next alma mater. I think I have a wise son...or at least in this department at the moment.

I loved my time at college, learning to manage money for myself, take care of my own room, share a space with another human being (DS is an only child and really needs to learn to share living quarters!) learning to cook (I failed miserably in that department, just as DH! LOL) and all the other things that you learn when you depend upon yourself. Not to mention the fun time you have as a young adult learning to socialize as an adult. It's been fun reliving youth vicariously through my son. Is this my second childhood? Scary thought! LOL

Well the big snowstorm that hit the country managed to miss us yesterday. We got some slushy rain, but no snow and other than quite an accumulation of water in some places, we didn't have any freezing. This has happened in the past. The snow hits north of us and the freezing rain hits south of us and we mainly get heavy rain. I think it's all the hot air over Washington that spares us from the truly yucky weather. Thank you Mr. Obama. Oh...was that politically incorrect? So sorry *grin*!

Guess I should stop this prattle for now and go work on my knight in shining armor. Hope everyone is warm and dry and safe this evening.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A new start...

Hi everyone!

Just a few pictures tonight to show my progress on the Camelot Sampler by Teresa Wentzler. Yikes, this is going to be a quite a BAP! I stated before that I'm making this for a coworker for her upcoming wedding. Hopefully I'll get it done before their wedding but I have my doubts, especially after working for a few days on this and this is how far I've gotten!

Some of this is done over two threads on 28 count linen, but a good portion of it is done over one (the most intricate parts). I'm not complaining, after all I chose to do this for them, I love doing these kinds of projects, I just hope I can get it done in a timely fashion. So here's a few pictures of my progress...

Hope everyone out there is enjoying getting ready for the Christmas season. I'm ahead of the game this year with my tree already shining in the living room, that's always my biggest obstacle. Now that the tree is up, most of my shopping is done, I'm going to try and relax (when I'm away from work) and enjoy the season. Hope you all are doing the same!


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Just a note...

Hi Everyone!

Just a little note tonight to let you know I'm still alive and kicking...well alive anyway! LOL It was an incredibly busy day at the store today and my dogs are barking (for those who speak real English and haven't heard this expression before, it means my FEET HURT!!) The Christmas rush is definitely on! I had a steady stream of customers, when one left, another one entered and so I didn't leave the design table for 4 hours straight. I didn't get lunch until 3 PM and I didn't get any work done in the back at all! I stayed an hour past my regular working hours (YEAH OVERTIME! LOL) but so far I'm still on track. After tomorrow (which is my day off) I'll be behind again. One day behind I can handle (I think).

I started working on a new project, and the others are going to fall along the wayside (I'll miss being caught up on the Friendly Stitchers SAL). A coworker is getting married in March and I decided to make the Camelot Sampler for her, tweaking it a bit to make it into a wedding sampler. Little did I know how much was done over one on linen when I decided to make this one, but it is so THEM, I just have to do this for them. I'll try to keep you posted on how far I'm getting. So far I have the outside outline done and I've started on the Jousting scene at the top. I'm already bug eyed, but all I can think is how much they are going to LOVE this when it's done. Any bets on how long this will take and whether I get it done for their wedding? I'm betting I don't...but hoping I do.

Well, off to stitch, and hopefully sometime tomorrow I can update with a picture of the sampler to show a little progress....wish me luck! *Hugs*!