For Whom The Bell Tolls

It has become quite “popular” that every year I hand make the Christmas cards. I usually pick 4-5 designs and mass produce as many as I can make from October to the 10th of December. I didn’t realize how important these cards were until I decided not to do it last year… I thought a general picture collage photo greeting card from Walmart would suffice.. (especially since that’s what everyone else does) but apparently I have set myself up to higher standards… I believe my aunt even insinuated that I ruined her Christmas because now there is no 2012 to display with the others…

Here are a few photos from my 2010 collection:

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See…simple.. I didn’t put too much rocket science into making them.. Lot’s of time yes…. But I am also aware that a good few probably get trashed…For something that took me maybe 2-3 days of my stitchy time… I chalked it up to be a waste….

2011:

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Unfortunately I did not take any photos of the cards themselves.. just the designs I was using. I ended up adding small charms in the centers. Those cards were so much better than 2010’s.. I’m disappointed I didn’t take any photos.

This year I promised I would get back into the Christmas cheer and do another round of hand made Christmas cards. I can’t ruin Christmas again can I???

My first design in the 2013 series comes from the 2010 edition of “Christmas Cross Stitch Favourites” I apologize now for bringing that C word into the blogsphere so soon into the chilly seasons. Stitching up these cards require that I start early

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So far I’ve completed 5, This design is easy enough to mass produce with little effort.

I brought it to the dojo yesterday. I occasionally stitch while my kids take their classes. Some kids usually sit and watch me stitch and ask a question or two. One older girl started up stitching and she asks me questions that no one else seems to have an answer for. Yesterday though… I was SWARMED by kids and adults who had received cards the previous years. One friend was gushing about how great my stitching was… It’s a simple bell… anyone, including the 9 year old could pull off this easy design.

It is nice though to be complimented ūüėČ

I’ll try to remember this when I’ve made 30 or more of these bells and I wonder if I’m about to lose my stitchy mind….

It leads me to wonder, so please answer… What special traditions do you have that put you into the holiday spirit?

 

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That’s It Tooth Fairy… You’re Fired!

I think of all the mythical figures I have to embody….

I suck most as the tooth fairy…

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So far it’s been a pretty easy going gig.. My son, 8 1/2 has only lost 5 teeth…

The first two were easy… one right after the other.. easy in and out..

The third… Ugh.. Well the third happened when my husband was out to sea. Our tooth fairy works on an open market schematic. One day it’s high… the next it’s low… My son had caught onto this..The third had quite a bit to go before it was due to come out. He asked me one day how much the tooth fairy currency was…

I only had a 20, so I said $20. That’s the highest it could ever get…

Twenty minutes later my son RIPPED it out of his mouth. I am shocked and amazed at what people will do for money..

My tooth fairy fails don’t end there…

The fourth one came out during my husband’s deployment. (Yeah.. have you noticed yet that he misses all the FUN stuff lol) I had been invited to go out with some friends… I had meant to do the switch before I left but my son hadn’t fallen asleep! By the time I got home I had forgotten about it…. Woke up to a very sad little boy….

Well…if you don’t know anything about me.. know this.. I am quick on my feet.. so I asked if the tooth was under the pillow.. he admitted it was kind of off to the side… Well.. everyone KNOWS the tooth has to be under the pillow right! So I got him to calm down and told him to keep it under his pillow. He went to the bathroom and I made the switch right then and there..I convinced him to lay back down with me in bed and we snuggled for a bit.. Eventually he checked and saw the switch had been made…

I vowed to never be so careless again….

But there’s a 5th tooth lost and I’m fired so you know there’s another story to be told.

If I landed this tooth with no problems I might have earned the gold medal in the Tooth Fairy Olympics.

My husband had duty.. (SERIOUSLY?!) so yet again this fairy was flying solo.

Things have changed around the hood since the last tooth…

My son now has bunk beds…

And the occasional bunk mate below….

None of this I had thought about until I was sneaking into my son’s room in the middle of the night.

I’m 5’… 3/4ths of an extra inch if that really matters…

My daughter’s step stool was too short to help me get to my son’s pillow so I had to move his computer chair over.. I had enough height….

But there was like a mountain of pillows…. This kid was making sure that tooth stayed under a pillow…

A good five minutes of searching went on when….

My son stirred… So I ducked, hoping he would go back to sleep…

Eventually I just got into the bed with him… he moved when I asked him to and was too asleep to register what was going on.. I found the tooth pocket I had made years ago for him:

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YES!!! I might actually do this thing right!!! I got down to the ground.. and I couldn’t find the tooth in the pocket!!!! So I’m searching the darkness.. when I hear a ping…

OMG did the tooth just fall out of the pocket into the his room?

By this point I learned that my kids could sleep through a tornado..so I grabbed a flashlight and began searching…

No tooth…

What is a tooth fairy to do?

I paid the $ and hoped I could find the tooth before my son does…

It’s been 3 days and so far it’s still MIA…

Toothfairy

The Football Coach

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I’ve seen 6 football games, watched my son train these few months….

I’m gunna declare myself an expert at this point.

I’ve learned that men that coach all have a specific style.

There’s “Always Amped Up on Monster Energy Man (I assume it’s ¬†Monster.. could be anything with a stimulant) He’s always shouting, and when he chastises and praises it’s the same shouting tone.. So the players can’t really tell if they’re being yelled at or doing something right…

There’s super chill everything is going to be OK coaches. The ones who only yell to get your attention and usually stand back and impart their wisdom to the kids one on one.

There’s the bi-polar coaches. The ones that exude inspiration and energy.. until a kid does something wrong and then like a flip of the switch things get scary and loud real quick <~ these of all should not be teaching little kids.. and I’m REALLY glad this variety is not found in my son’s set of coaches…

One thing they have in common… it’s their LIFE. And you can see that energy being passed onto the kids..

They ¬†have this chant at the end… Witchy 101 would use this chant to show the power infused into basic words. Its incantation has put a spell on these boys… They actually LIKE getting hit and taken down in tackles. They LOVE the idea of getting the ball and therefore being the target of a bunch of kids wanting to cream you…

They willingly come back for more…..

My friends… I dare say I enrolled my son in a cult.

Deer in the Headlights..

You know the look… You’re in the middle of something, and then BAM! Something surprises you and you freeze in an awkward position assuming that will give you magical powers to figure out what the hell is going on…¬†

I had that… with…

A deer… or three…

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It’s not the sudden arrival of wildlife in my backyard. That happens all the time. Deer are a dime a dozen in my area.¬†

What is surprising is the location of the deer. You can’t tell from this distance, but right behind this deer USED to be a beautiful hosta plant. My husband transplanted these hosta from my main garden bed and lined them around the driveway.¬†

Little unknown fact: Deer love hosta plants. 

They wait until they are nice and plump and juicy. Ready to blossom some really pretty flowers…. And they devour them blossom and all in one sitting. Leaving nothing but stumpy leaf stems.

It’s hosta genocide…

Those F*ckrs.

6 years… SIX YEARS I have been losing my hostas to these beasts!

And when I come face to face with them… What do I do?

I freeze….. slowly reach for my camera and take pictures….

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He used to have the most beautiful eyes…..

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Almost fresh out of high school is when I started working at the hotel. If you’ve been following me and can remember, that was almost 12 years ago.¬†

I worked with this young guy, my uncle’s protege. My uncle had never married or had kids, so this boy might as well have been his. We eventually started dating a few weeks after I graduated. By Christmas we had “broken up”. That is the only official time we were “together”. But as time went on it became hard to define that line. Were we together?¬†

We weren’t. I was the mistress. The one that in rare moments of clarity is remembered and used to forget things temporarily.¬†

The “wife” was crack. An addiction. Something that love couldn’t overcome. In the year that followed our “break-up”, he had burned almost all of his bridges. He was no longer working at the hotel. He had been fired for stealing money from the safe. We would talk often but I tried to keep my distance. Everyone would say were still together, it just was… complicated? As soon as a new guy entered my life. He would come around claiming to be clean and for the time would be. Long enough for me be to stupid enough to believe maybe he had changed. I broke up with handful of decent guys because I loved this one drug riddled boy. My first love….¬†

I had touched on it briefly during a Five Minute Friday, the moment I knew it was truly over for us HERE

He went away to Colorado for some drug and alcohol program. He said losing me was the thing that made him truly want to sober up. That winter was trying. Trying but liberating. I found a bit of myself. Went to California in April with some friends and had a great time. When I came back his mother called me in tears. He was back in town but hadn’t told me. Apparently he had owed the wrong people money and they stabbed him in the throat. I called my uncle in tears because I was at work and just couldn’t handle it……at first.. Once the shock had worn off I became numb. I had two whole seasons to live without his drama.¬†

I did visit him when he asked me to. Went and held his hand as they took the staples out. Hung out with him for the day. I remember he was laying on the couch just about to fall asleep, and I wanted to kiss him on the cheek and tell him everything would be ok.. But looking in his eyes, and by god did he have the most beautiful blue eyes I have ever seen, I realized that my part of him…was gone. My time with him and his chaos was over.¬†

I needed that closure. Without it I don’t think I would have ended that two year long cycle we had.¬†

I found a link this morning to his latest antics. I guess he was released and became a panhandler in Boston. He ended up mugging some lady and is back in jail.

They released his photo. He looks so haggard. His eyes lost their brilliant blue. They’re now grey and dull….¬†

They used to be so beautiful…¬†