Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A finish!

What do you do when you wake on Memorial Day to a power outage?  Yep, power went out at 1:48 am, and wasn't expected to come back on until 4 pm - some sort of a problem in the overhead lines.  First thing I did was roll back over and try to get some more sleep.  Once that wouldn't work I took my stitching out to the back patio and settled in.  The weather was gorgeous, and it was blissfully quiet.

I'm pleased to present a finished Jenny Bean Spring Sampler (or maybe we should call this the Margaret Leona Campbell Sampler).

For a picture of the whole thing, just look up on my blog header - I'm that proud of it!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Evil Scales

Ladies, I'm here to tell you the scales are NOT your friend.  Ignore those flashing numbers and stop beating yourself up over what they're saying, because its NOT the whole story!

My weight loss and fitness journey (since Jan 1) has been a constant struggle.  Weeks, months of doing all the right things, and the scale barely moves.  Sometimes it even goes up!  I've had my thyroid tested, and while its not bad enough for medication or to blame the lack of downward scale movement, it is borderline and I need to have it tested every year.  The guys at the gym keep telling me I'm looking better, but well, they're guys.  Finally my trainer got tired of my bitching and moaning and pulled out the body fat reader.

Hrmm, what's this?  I might still be weighing in at the same weight as this session of Kroc Fit, but in 5 weeks I'd managed to lose over 3% body fat.  Hallelujah!  I gained muscle mass!  Next Friday is the final weigh-in/results, so we'll see how I did with this 8 week session.  I just need to be good over the Memorial Day weekend!

Overall I'm only  down about 15 pounds, but I can fit into more of my "normal" clothes now, I can do push-ups, I can hold a full plank for over a minute (working up to 2), and as long as I keep up with my ab exercises and keep my core strong, I don't need to pop painkillers for the arthritis in my spine.  I don't even try to run anymore, the pain the next day just isn't worth it (both back and ankle pain).  My new great love is spin class.  Best sweaty workout ever (as long as Omar is teaching)!

Moral of the story, don't beat yourself up over what the scales say.  Instead, use a pair of jeans as your unit of measurement, how much (or little) you huff and puff after going up some stairs, or how badly your back aches.

Tight jeans - cut back on the bad carbs, eating after 7 pm, and sweets.  

Huffing and puffing - get some more cardio in.  

Aching back - weak core, do some more crunches and planks, and don't forget to work upper, lower and the obliques!

Oh, and since this is a stitching blog, there has been progress on Jenny's Spring sampler.  I might actually have a finish soon!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.  I think just about every stitcher must suffer from this to a tiny extent.  Admit it, it takes infinite patience and obsessiveness to sit there for hours making tiny little X's.  Maybe some suffer more than others.  I'll admit I'm probably in that more category.  I like things symmetrical.  If my trainer has us do an exercise for one side of the body and then moves on before working the other side, I'm the first in the group jumping up and down and waving my hands.  Ok, well maybe not jumping up and down since I'm probably sweating buckets, but I'm waving my hands and yelling out.

I also like things completed, although from the pile of unfinished WIPs you wouldn't know that.  Maybe not complete in reality, but the potential to be complete.  That's why something was bothering me about Miss Jenny's Spring Sampler.  OMG, the alphabet only goes to S!!!!  I can handle historic alphabets missing letters, that's supposed to be like that.  But only going to S bugged me.  So I fixed it.  We now have T through Z going down the right side.  I won't need to be sent to the loony bin with an OCD breakdown.

Edit:  I received permission from Theresa to provide my charted changes to anyone that wants them.  Why would I need to get permission from you you ask?  Because I was polite, and I had reproduced a portion of her chart to provide frame of reference.

Or at least there will be T through Z when I get done.  Oops, the ironing board cover is showing through on the picture below.  I was so proud of myself for actually ironing this before taking the picture, then realized the light was getting bad.  Bad lighting would also be the reason why I had to do the auto-fix thingy and the red chimney is looking brighter than what it really is.

At least I admit I suffer from OCD, unlike my ex-husband, but that's a totally different story!  Come on, if your tooth brushing routine takes 10 minutes, and you get interrupted, then insist on starting from the beginning, then you have a huge case of OCD (and no, this wasn't a one-time thing).

There hasn't been any stitching other than Miss Jenny going on, and that's been limited to an hour or 2 most evenings. Am I actually turning into a 1 at a time gal?  I doubt it, I just want to get Jenny finished since she means so much to me, and I've promised the chart to a special person.

Mom and Dad got back from their cruise (which they loved) and Dad promptly went into the hospital for surgery, which was scheduled before they left.  What wasn't planned was the second surgery over the weekend to clear up some complications from the first.  He's a horrible patient and invalid.  At least after surgery #2 he seems to using a tiny amount of common sense and hopefully will have a prompt recovery.

I'll leave you with a few photos from the San Diego Zoo Wild Animal Park.  We went there for Mother's Day and only saw a fraction of the park.  Its really expanded from the last time I was there, over 10 years ago.  If you want to see the full 150 photos I took, they're in my Picasa Zoo album.

Lazy male lion

White rhino ambling down a road

Cheetah decided to get up and stretch at just the right moment

Not really a zoo bird, but he made the funniest sound
when he puffed up.

Smart guy to get his head and huge beak through the fence

This is one time I wish I had a video recorder, it was amazing
watching him stand on his hind legs to get at
the foliage

Sunday, May 6, 2012

A House for Jenny

A house was built for Jenny.  Not sure which is worse, constantly re-threading a needle to change colors, or doing what seems like endless blocks of solid stitching.  I swear that house isn't very big, but it seemed to take forever to stitch.  Or maybe its just Princess Annie not leaving me alone for more than 10-15 minutes at a time. Either she wants out, or wants to play with her favorite squeaky ball, or she just wants some loving.  And of course I do whatever she wants.

Poor picture quality, but I guess that's the difference between a phone and a huge digital SLR camera, and the price to pay for laziness.  I've added in a few colors - I didn't want pink goose legs, or a pink brick chimney.

I've been waking up pretty early most of the time.  Usually I'd just read some then try to go back to sleep.  Nope, the Princess has decided that if I'm going to keep her awake by having a light on, then she can go outside.  She goes back up to bed, while I just sigh and make a pot of coffee and wait for the sunrise.  The one day I tried to go back to bed, she had stolen my spot.

These sunrise pictures were taken a couple of weeks ago, since then we've had nothing but fog, or as its called in San Diego, marine layer.  You can just barely see a thin layer above the lights.

Can't believe the moon showed up in this picture, and some moon phase experts will probably be able to figure out when I took the pictures.

Back to working on school stuff.  Just one more project to finish up for my Human Resources class, and then its done.  Its only taken me 4 months, which means I have 2 months to do 2 more classes.  Eep!