Sunday, November 26, 2006

As if I needed another book! *wink*

Like as if I needed another craft book to add my ever expanding book stash! LOL! Yup, I bought 3 books at surprisingly good prices at Summit USJ today. Popular bookshop is having a SALE at the concourse of Summit! Lots of craft books, and I found 3 that I like! Errr..did I say I just found 3? LOL! *wink*

1. The Ultimate Book of Quilting, XS and Needlecraft
2. Leisure Arts Sweeter Than The Rose
3. XS Garden Projects by Joanne Sanderson

All books were further reduced another 20%. I think I made a really good buy and all the patterns inside the two latter books are really nice!

When am I going to stitch any of the designs in the books? Someday.... someday....*grin* For now, I am going to go browsing........errr...flipping through the pages of the books I just bought.....*grin*

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The beginning...........

My first progress report on the Victoria Sampler's cyberclass "Friends in Stitches Bellpull".

After all the gridding is in place..yeah..Barbara said I have changed...LOL! I never liked gridding my fabric, I just want to just jump into a project! LOL! *grin* But, this is an exception. This is my first attempt on linen. Hooray! I finally took the plunge! LOL! *wink* My eyes went bonkers just counting the holes to get the gridding correct. I had to count like 3 or 4 times to be be sure that I have not miscounted. Can you imagine if I did not grid the fabric? I think I would be making mistakes every few stitches, if not EVERY single stitch! LOL!

This is only the beginning, but already I am experiencing neckache! LOL! The holes are so tiny, and some of the stitches are so intricate, I had to take off my glasses in order to make sure that I have got the stitches in the correct position. Really a sign of old age! LOL!

I think linen is not for me....heheh...for now. *wink* I think I prefer evenweave, if I want to work on something intricate. The unevenness of the linen makes counting sometimes so difficult, it can gets frustrating at times, that I ended up taking more short breaks to calm the nerves! LOL! This piece is going to be a real challenge to me, so, I hope friends will cheer me on.....*wink*

Seeing double?

I finally have the time to report on my progress on the 5 Mini Challenge. Feels like as if it has ages since I last put in any report, not only on the 5 minis, but any cross stitch related report for that matter. How time flies, and things have been kind of hectic at work, and with the streamyx down twice on weekends, you just don't get to do what you had set out to do for the weekend.

I completed the alternative colourway for the 5th mini challenge using Ellen Maurer Stroh's small pincushion freebie, which is part of a set of stitching tools, more than a week ago.

Even though I actually started on the single colourway using DMC815, but, it was more interesting to do the overdyed version because I was eager to see how the colour changes gradually as you out in every stitch. I just could not put it down! LOL! Of course, most of the stitching was done while I got delayed for 4 hours at the airport in Kota Bharu, and while my hubby was away on a course for 4 days.

I finished stitching the single colourway this morning, taking the opportunity to complete it as I supervise the weekly maid doing her chores. Aaaahhh! Now the stitching is done, I still have not quite figured out how to finish any of my 5 minis. Hmmmmmm.............maybe I need a whole free weekend to do up the finishing!

On another stitching note, I have started on the French Redwork Exchange, the first ever exchange to be organised at the newly formed NEEDLES N CRAFTS group! We, at NNC, are very excited about our inaugural exchange, and I must thank Margaret for her efforts to organize this historic event for the group. Thanks, Margaret!

I am using DMC115 for this freebie piece taken from the site "Voyage sur Toile". I have to thank everyone at NNC who has helped me to get just the right design for this exchange because I was beginning to feel "anxious and frustrated" *wink* when I just could not make out some of the french sites to get designs I like for the exchange, and to think that I actually took up french as one of my elective subjects at the university! LOL! Thanks, everyone!

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Beauty in miniatures

I went shopping today for miniature things! Well, actually it wasn't planned. I was in the vicinity of Nilai 3 in search of the place where I am to attend a management course. After finding the place, we decided to venture to this so called famous Nilai 3 where I was told that it would be heaven for those interested in all things crafts.

Yup, I sure went kind of crazy looking at all those lovely miniatures. They are so sweet, and I could not resist buying a few! I am even thinking of getting a few more, maybe to give away as gifts. *wink* Take a look!

I am already making plans to make another visit there on one of the evenings after my management course. Besides probably getting a few more pieces of the miniatures, I want to go hunting for some nice rattan baskets. Yeah, like as if I don't already have enough baskets at home! LOL!

I saw quite a number of baskets, rather a lot! I just could not decide which one I wanted when I was there today, because thet came in all shapes and sizes! I just went oohhhh and aaahh, and saying that this could be used for this and that! LOL!

Mummy's pride

As far as I can remember, I gave my first public speech when I was already in primary school, if not even later. But, last weekend, my son, who is 6 years old, gave his first 'public speech'. We thot he'd never do it!

You see, days before that, during the rehearsal for his kindie concert, when it was his turn to go on stage to give the welcome speech, he burst into tears. No persuading could get him to do it. I wasn't there to see the rehearsals, but his teacher told me abt it when I went there to pick him up later that day.

He simply refused to do it. He kept saying that he is scared. My son is simply afraid of large crowds, especially one that focusses on him. He cries at almost all his birthday parties when it is time to blow the candles, coz all eyes are on him. LOL!

For the next 3 days b4 d concert, I kept pushing him to practice. Each time his Atok and Tokmama, or the maids, passes by while he practices, he wud go numb, or he wud go hiding behind my back in shyness.

Until the day of the concert itself, I really could not tell if he was actually going to go upstage to do it, but, I told him that if he did, it will make mummy proud and he will get his wish of a bubble soap gun.

Heheh...when his name was announced to come on stage, I half expected him to come crying like what he did during the rehearsals or his birthday party . Guess what? He did it, and with no text, and so confidently too! I could not hold my excitement, I almost cried! LOL!

Even his teacher was surprised! What was more surprising to his teacher was when she asked him where is his text paper for him to read from. When he aswered that he did not bring it, she panicked! LOL!

See, how kids can actually surprise you in the most unexpected ways? LOL!

BTW, he was also involved in a punjabi dance, and I think he really did us all proud!

Sayang, you just made mummy very hapy and proud! Mummy and Abah lives you very much!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

To update or not to update?

I waited days to get connected again after my streamyx connection (local internet service provider) run into some problems. I was eager to update my WIP 5 mini Challenge. But, now that I am finally connected, it is so late, I am tired and sleepy, I just want to crawl into bed! LOL!

I think that is what I'll do. If I try to update my blog in this sleepy mood, I might just end up `saying' something that I might regret saying tommorow. LOL!

So, it will have to be the weekend for the updating. I just hope that I will not have any connection problems over the weekend.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Good intentions gone awry.....

Someone once said to me that some, or was it most, problems of the world originated from good intentions. Ironic, isn't it? How can good intentions create problems? It does......

I wish to recall an experience I went thru slightly less than 30 years ago (don't try guessing my age! LOL! *wink*) when I was in secondary school. I met a girl whom I had clicked almost from day one that I met her in Form One. I can't say why or how we clicked, but we just did. We did everything, well, almost everything, together. Tea breaks or recess time, as what we call it in school, extra curicular activities, gossips and what not, everything. We were like going everywhere together, as the malay saying goes, "macam belangkas". People started calling us twins, though we are of a different race. It did not matter to us. The friendship was strong, that nothing would break us, or, so I thought. She was a prefect though, while I was just an average student. Heheh....I was a late bloomer! LOL! *wink*

So close we were that for her birthday, I wanted to surprise her with gifts. The year before, for my birthday, she had bought me gifts. You could only imagine my excitement! *wink*

I only met her after her birthday the year before had already passed (she was a January baby). Despite being good friends, I can't exactly recall why I never knew of her birthdate prior to her birthday. Maybe because she never told me? I never told her my birthdate either, but she got it out of my sister.

So, for her birthady, I decided to get her something too and surprise her. Not knowing the date, I asked her sister who was also schooling in the same school. Her sister gave me the date with no problems. In fact, she told me what her sister likes.

I made big plans, well, by a school girl standard, that is! LOL! I bought her a couple of gifts, I can't quite recall what, but, I also bought her a small cup cake so that she can blow a single candle. I was excited all week, and can't wait for the day to arrive. When it finally arrived, can you guess what happened?

I don't think I ever expected what was going to happen next. My dear friend blew her top! She was mad that I had known the date of her birthday. She said that it was a secret, and no one should have known. She said that when she gave me presents for my birthady, she wasn't expecting me to buy her anything in return. She doesn't like her birthadys to be celebrated!

How am I to know? I was only 14 then. Her sister never said anything about her not wanting people to celebrate her birthday. In fact, her sister said that to surprise her would be a nice gift, and very thoughtful.

I was shocked by my good friend's reaction to my good intentions. How could this be happening? I was very saddened by the turn of events. I apologized over and over again if remembering her birthday had offended her instead of making her happy. I treasured the friendship so much, I consulted her sister and ask that she speak to my good friend, and to ask for her to apologize on my behalf when my own efforts failed.

Her sister could not believe either how a good intention had actually taken a turnabout reaction from her sister. The sister tried, but to no avail. It saddened her (the sister) too. My friend refused to talk to me. She would rather break the friendship than forgive me. It took me a long time to come to terms with what had happened. We were in the same class, and sat next to each other. But, since that incident, she sat elsewhere. I was hurt. Those that knew of our friendship were all surprised, but they just shook their heads, not knowing how else to react.

I moved to another school the following year when I was offered a place in a boarding school. I asked for forgiveness one more time before I took my leave, but, she refused to even look me in the eye. I moved on...

To this day, I can still recall that incident. Sometimes, subconsconsciously, I would be asking myself how is she doing now, how many kids she would have by now, and where would she be living.

I still wonder to this day, how a good intention could have gone awry.....I guess I will never know the answer......

Sunday, November 05, 2006

A week full of the unexpected.....

I was in Kota Bahru on Thursday to visit my mom who was in a state of shock and traumatised after her house was burglared in the wee hours of the morning of Tuesday, 31 October 2006.

She fell in her attempt to chase after a burglar who entered her house at 3 am that nite. As it is, she was already not that well, and this isn't making her health any better. She was in a state of shock when I called. Just thot I'd go back and give her some moral support and see if she is OK.

No jewellery was taken, but her hand bag and all documents and CC inside the bag are gone, including 3 handphones belonging to my mum and nieces. My mum woke up to go to the toilet and bumped into the burglar. M glad that the burglar did not harm my mum and my niece and nephew who slept with her. Thank God for that!

She is a lot better when I met her on Thursday. In fact, her spirits were high coz she was happy I made the trip bck with my son to see her. *smile* I am glad I made the trip too! She actually cooked `nasi kerabu', a favourite dish of my hubby. Thanks, Ma! Love you!

However, I ended up coming home at 11pm that nite! The flight (Air Asia) was delayed for 4 hours! I was worried about my son. U know how kids cud get restless after awhile? But, fortunately, I brought his toys and favourite book along. It kept him occupied for some time. 2wards the nite, he managed to hook up with a boy his age and they started playing together, so that kept them both occupied until it was time to board b plane, 4 hours later!

AirAsia only gave out a pack of choc milk, kitkat, and biscuits to compensate 4 the delay. I could hv survived, but not a 6 yrs old active boy! LOL! Luckily there was a KFC at d airport complex.

I am also glad that I went prepared for the `just in case' situation. I brought along my XS. It helped make the waiting bearable.

The last time I had a 4 hour delay when on my way to Penang for work was by Malaysia Airlines. When I posted it at the board abt the delay, Roz said that I shud count my blessings, coz the delay was as a result of the maintenance people finding some technical problems BEFORE flying. She said that, what if the plane had taken off already only to realise........may God protect us always.

It made me think! So, when again I got delayed that day, though this time on an AirAsia flight, my thots went back to what Roz had said and I quickly settled down for the long wait, hoping that my son wudn't get restless too quickly.

Everything happens for a reason, I guess.

Well, as soon as my son was all settled in playing with his toys and working on his English workbook, after a meal of KFC, out came my stitching! LOL! I am one that cannot just sit around doing nothing, letting precious time go by unproductively. I managed to do quite a lot, really. Take a look!

I am beginning to like the way this alternative colourway is coming out, especially as you stitch it, the colour changes. Makes for an interesting result.

On another note, this is something I got in the mail on Friday. It is from the Victoria Sampler Company. I signed up for the CYBERCLASS, and part of the fee comes with the materials. The class has started more than a week ago, but, I have yet to find time to go to the site to download the class notes and instructions. I hope to do that this weekend.

Heheh....and, as always, since my mum asked *wink*, I always do my stitching, either when my hubby goes jogging, to the gym, watches his favourite TV program or movies, or when he goes online. I also take the opportunity to stitch when my son is asleep, watching TV or playing, or doing his homework. I squeeze whatever time I have in between all those activities because, other than during those times, it is spent doing household chores and cooking. The rest, of course, is sleep time, which, actually, isn't that much either, coz my hubby sleeps late, and I tend to wait up with him. *grin*