Mindy Memories

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Back on the wagon

I abandoned my beloved SparkPeople website when I started this new job in late March. For some reason, it was just hard for me to continue with it. So, now I'm down 15 but up 5 for a net loss of 10 pounds -- it's still a loss, but I need to get control of this before I end up back where I started.

So, I'm using the nutrition tracker and the message boards again. I did well with the challenges there in the past, and just signed up for a Labor Day challenge, losing 10 pounds by Labor Day. I think that's very reasonable.

It will probably help, also, if I go back to only getting that tall iced vanilla latte next door at Barnes & Noble on Friday mornings, not every morning lol. Those things are addicting! My soda intake has slowly been creeping up and I'm going to nip that in the bud, too. It's not as bad as it had been, but I'm drinking some every day and at one point I was down to only drinking soda once or twice a week. When I go back to drinking once or twice a week it will be non-diet, as I don't think diet soda is really any better for me than regular soda, and it may be worse.

The only problem I'm having with SparkPeople is that, since they've revamped it, it loads much more slowly on my dial-up here at home. That's frustrating. Luckily, at work I can hop on there and track things very quickly on breaks. I really enjoy the message boards there, so I hope we can get faster internet access soon. I'm noticing that more and more websites are geared toward faster connections, and we need to bite the bullet.

Monday, June 26, 2006


You know, I really like CSI but sometimes they are just WAY more graphic than they need to be. I won't go into detail, but for those of you who know the shows suffice it to say it's the one where the bodybuilder is dead and they find out it has to do with mold in the wall. What really grossed me out is how the coroner found out that the guy had inhaled the mold. Not pleasant!

Hmmmm, I just saw a commercial where the guy talks about seeing a unicorn. It reminds me of when I was a teen and the family took one of our rides to somewhere we hadn't been before. I don't know where we were, but it was backwoods of nowhere. We went by a barn and there was what looked like a white horse. When we got closer, we saw that the horse had a very light pink tint to it. It may have just been the skin underneath, but I've seen plenty of white horses and never saw a pink-tinted one before. Even the hair had a pink tint to it. I wonder if the owner decided to have dye it or something. I guess the unicorn got me thinking... (always dangerous).

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Winter clothes out, summer clothes in

Yes, it's the end of June and I'm finally doing this. I really don't have a lot of summer clothes that fit me at the moment, but got out what I had and added what I recently bought. I put away my winter clothes. I also went through some of each and am donating the clothes that fit but don't look great on me, or that are too small and aren't my style anymore. I still have quite a few clothes that are small for me that I hold on to, but they are "classics" that don't go out of style, and are clothes I really like and will look great if I lose enough weight to wear them again. I know we aren't supposed to do that, but I as much as I like buying new clothes, it's also fun to go shopping in my own closet. :)

I haven't done any stitching in the last week, but that's OK. I'll probably get some done this week. I've been busy with other parts of my life and that has just fallen a bit by the wayside.

I'm joining a gym in Philadelphia next week, as they are giving a deal for the 4th where you get July free. It's expensive, about the same as when I used to go to the Healthplex in Springfield Hospital. I thought about it for a while, and felt it was worth it. I paid more for that gym, but I went much more often than when I was going to LA Fitness, and enjoyed it more. The one in Philly is the Sporting Club at the Bellevue and is a 10-15 minute walk from work and also close to the train station. Of course, the main thing I look at in a gym is the pool, and this has a fantastic pool! Plus, they have a towel service included in the price, which is very handy when you're commuting from the 'burbs on the train and tend to use two towels. I'm really looking forward to this as swimming always makes me feel better and helps me get in shape. Of course, I really look awful in a bathing suit at the moment, but I will have to deal with it.

Not much else going on. Tim was here yesterday afternoon but had to go back to his mom's. The good part about him watching his mom's house while she's recovering from the knee surgery is that I can get things done around here without irritation. It would be nice to see him a bit more, though. Oh well, it will only be for a few months and this is something he needs to do for his mom and the least I can do for her is to support it.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Thanks! - And new clothes!

I'm still researching Quakers and also Unitarians to see what is for me. I think I'll probably visit a few different services and see what seems to feel like "home" to me. Thank you so much for the nice comments and also the comments left about my stitching. I so appreciate it! I was worried I might get some nasty comments to the spirituality issues, and am so thankful I haven't -- at least, not yet :)

I went shopping this week! I haven't lost more weight recently, but I found that my clothes are bigger than I thought, by accident. I was talking with my boss, who is only 2 years older than me, and said that I was giving away some of my clothes that had gotten too big. She mentioned that was good and that she noticed some of my clothes were getting a little baggy -- but I thought the clothes I was wearing were fine and the ones I'm getting rid of are others LOL! She felt bad and said she shouldn't have said anything, but I told her I reall appreciated it and didn't take it badly at all, because it's something I needed to hear. She's heavy in her lower body and has had some of the same "hiding behind clothes" issues that I have. My main problem, I think, is that I buy the wrong types of tops. I like comfy knits -- Henleys, polo shirts, etc. Those types of shirts tend to "show off" my spare tire and for me not to do that I need to get them big. Even though I'm very broad-shouldered, sometimes those tops are too big at my neckline to make room for Gutticus Maximus. So, I spent a long time the other day trying on some different styles and found cute stuff.

I've also decided to wear skirts more often, and most of the skirts I have are wintery and black. So, I've bought some more. I really wanted to buy some of those really long tiered skirts, but I was having a hard time finding them in petites and regulars are floor-length -- not a good look on me unless the skirt is straight. I bought quite a bit the other day at Fashion Bug, along with some summer shoes as I didn't have any of those, either. Today during my lunch hour I stopped by H&M and picked up a cute skirt, then Dress Barn and picked up a gorgoues turquoise and white outfit.

I'm very proud of myself for a few reasons, but the main one is that I took my time and really thought about what I was buying and if I'd wear it. I tried on a dress that was really nice and I almost bought it, but I realized it that I probably wouldn't be comfortable in it all day and may not wear it after I took it home. So, it went back on the rack.

Below are my show-off pictures of what I bought. I don't have anyone to take my picture right now, as Tim is at his mom's so the clothes alone will have to do. I can wear the short skirts to work on casual Fridays, and they are those "scooters" and are more comfortable than normal minis. They look good on my legs, as they aren't TOO short, but are about 3 inches above my knee and start to cover my legs where they start to go to hell.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

I know, I know

I've been really bad about updating my blog this month. I actually have a lot on my mind and a lot I want to say, but I can't think about getting it organized at the moment. Suffice it to say I've been dealing with a bit of a spiritual crisis for a few years now and it's come to a head. I consider myself a Christian in a world full of other Christians who feel I'm not one because I try to be tolerant. I've discovered that perhaps, while I still believe in God, I need to really look at my beliefs and see where I fit in. This has been coming for quite some time. Let's face it -- these days, a white woman who lives with an African-American man, is not married and who doesn't want children isn't looked upon fondly in many Christian circles. To us, marriage is just a piece of paper, we are already committed to each other and have outlasted several marriages already.

Today I was at the Friends Meeting House in Philly for World Refugee Day. The more I looked at their information, the more I thought that this may be a better fit for my beliefs. I believe that all people deserve love and respect, regardless of race, religion or sexual orientation. I like the social activism many of the Quakers are involved in, at least in my area, and that they aren't an "in your face" belief. I like that the worship services I'm interested in aren't led by a pastor but are silent worship services where people say what they feel they need to say but are otherwise silent. I've always had a hard time just letting God take care of things and feel that He gives me a brain in order to use it to learn, to be able to make my own judgements about what is best. Sometimes I fall short, certainly, but I just cannot go against my own judgement.

I know this is very scattered, as are my thoughts. I just felt like I had to get it out. I'm not saying I'm an instant Quaker (a bad oatmeal joke just came to mind lol), but I'm mulling things over and researching. This isn't something I'm taking lightly, which is why I've been dealing with this for quite some time.

I hope this hasn't offended any of you who are reading, as I know many of you are faithful Christians who I care about. I'm just finding that the Christianity I've been a part of these last 35 years just isn't working for me anymore. I feel like I need something more. To me it's another form of Christianity, although I know to some of you it's not.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Finally - photos!

I finally got my butt in gear, got new batteries for my camera and took some pictures of my stitching progress over the last month or so.

This past week, my beads came in for Deepest Love and Mermaid of the Pearls. I'm nowhere near the point of adding beads to MoTP, but Deepest Love was waiting on them. Luckily, there's no a huge amount of beadwork on DL, so I was able to get that done this afternoon so she's finished!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I also worked quite a bit a few weeks ago on Lady of the Flag. You may remember that my goal is to finish her by 9/11 this year. After the progress I made in about a week or two, I'm quite sure I should be able to make my goal. She was my May Maiden I worked on. I really like stitching her, but I can only take so much of that gold color and that is a BIG dress! You can see where I worked my way down skimpily so that I could stitch a tiny part of the blue "LIBERTY" section at the bottom.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Here's Stars of Merlin that I actually finished about two months ago, but never photographed. He's from Simply Old-Fashioned and is for my friend's son, Sean. I changed the beadwork a little and used a different color for the non-black areas, as Sean saw that particular Needlepoint Necessities floss and thought it was pretty cool :)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

The rest are starts I've made since January. If I recall, I started Rose Celebration, Garden Verses and MoTP during Guilt-Free February. I was debating it at the time, but I've been doing pretty well with my finishes, having finished Guardian Angel about a month or so ago. I don't have a picture of MoTP because I haven't done much work on her. The same goes for Fairie Treasures, which I started in April for All About Fairies month. Those monthly themes we have going over at the Mirabilia board are going to be the death of me. Must. Not. Pay. Attention.

Rose Celebration

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Garden Verses (love her hair!)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I also have great Smokey pictures, but will add them on a different post. He's still a very handsome kitty, at 12 years old, and is very photogenic.

SBQ catch-up

Haven't posted the SBQs for quite a while, but will only go back a few weeks.

Do you collect charts by one particular designer, yet have never stitched anything by that designer? If so, which designer and why do you collect the charts but have not yet stitched any of them?
I own many TW charts and am still working on the first one I started about 5 years ago. I work on it a little here and there. Her designs are beautiful, but they are more of a challenge then I like sometimes. I also collect some Mirabilias that I may never stitch, but I like to have them as Nora's my favorite designer. I also collect Dragon Dreams and Just Nan designs, and have started collecting Simply Old-Fashioned designs. I probably will eventually stitch those, though. I could probably sell the TW books and charts, but I like looking at them and will maybe some day stitch some of them.

What is your favorite specialty stitch? Which one is your least favorite? Why?
I like most specialty stitches -- eyelets, starts, satin stitches. The only one I really don't like is the Queen Stitch. I just can't get mine to look even the way they are supposed to look, and often substitue other specialty stitches when they come up. I've made quite a few small designs using nothing but specialty stitches.

Lately, it seems that many stitching bloggers have experienced a loss of their stitching mojo. Have you ever lost your stitching mojo? If so, how did you get it back and how long did it take?
Yes, last time it lasted for about a month after I finished a large project. I often go through one after I finish a Mirabilia. It's almost like I'm sad that project is finished, even though I have several others going and worked like crazy to finish it. Makes no sense. I usually use the time to organize stash, get more reading done, catch up on housework, etc. In fact, the last time I went through a slump I finally got around to reading the entire Harry Potter series that's currently in print. After a few days, a week, or a month, I get in the mood again and either get to work on an in-progress Mirabilia or a small project.

Do you or have you stitched with over-dyed threads? (Weeks Dye Works, The Gentle Art Sampler Threads, Six Strand Sweets, etc.) If so, what is your opinion concerning them? If not, why not?
Yes, and I love them! I used them on my self-designed little specialty stitch ornaments and plan to do these every year for Christmas gifts. I use them on other projects as well. They don't work for everything. I can't imagine using them for Mirabilias, as the shading on those designs are already great and replacing those color blocks with overdyed floss would probably make the designs way too busy. I love collecting overy-dyed threads and absolutely loooove the Caron Waterlillies over-dyeds -- stitching with that silk, it's like buttah. :)

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Remember D-Day

Yikes. I've been really bad about posting lately, and I still need to get those pictures. Oh well, now I have more of The Lady of the Flag to show off than before.

I'm on my lunch break so don't have much time, but I just had to get this off my chest: Who gives a crap if today is June 6, 2006? If you want to make it out as being 666 and any child born today could be the Anti-Christ, well, that's on you. Does this happen every year ending in 06? It's not like this is the first one. I understand it for marketing the remake of "The Omen" - makes perfect sense for them to do this. But I've been hearing so much about women are having their babies today that it's a bit much. Some think it's funny, others are seriously freaked out by it.

Normally this wouldn't really bother me that much except people are forgetting something that happened about 62 years ago today: D-DAY. People from many countries gave their lives that day and those that followed, but it seems to have barely been a blip on the morning news today.