Sunday, July 30, 2006

Not surprised


Today has been a productive day so far. I have done a ton of housework already and I am ready to sit and relax for a while. But I can't. Well, not really. I have to work on a Flat Stanley project that I was sent a couple of months ago and I keep slacking on it. I actully forgot about it for a while, it was on the bookshelf next to my sewing machine. I really want to get it back to the little girl before school starts (that is the deadline), so I must sit down and write about what we have done with Flat Stanley. Which is nothing. I am basically going to write a report for her about Saipan since it seems like 99.9% ot the world doesn't realize that Saipan exists. I got her some maps & brochures and am going to send tomorrow's newspaper for her to look at. I also bought a bag of dried mangoes for her. I know, they aren't really from Saipan, but they say so on the bag and they are just so darned tasty. Might be because of the sugar that they are coated with. Who knows?

Yesterday we went shopping for a bit. I am on the hunt for a new bra. Or three. I felt about as frustrated trying to find one in my "new" size as my Mom's old dog, Red, must have felt when she tried to lick her butt. (Red was downright obese and probably hadn't caught sight of her hind end in years, but that didn't stop her from trying.) The problem is, I don't know where to go here to get stuff like that. We tried Joeten but that was a bust (no pun intended)...DH says to try DFS Galleria, what he calls "the mall". I have never been there, but the stores that they advertise are: Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Bvlgari, Prada, etc. I am thinking that I am S.O.L for a while. I might have to try online. And that sucks because I am so particular. :(


Not much to report. I have been crocheting dishcloths for the past few days. And I started to make myself a new fob. It is from the Prairie Schooler "Garden Beasties" series. It is the little frog. Quite appropriate I think. I am doing it over one on 28 count fabric. First time I have ever used a hoop with xs, I usually just use them for embroidery, but the piece of fabric is so small and my hands cramp when stitching "in hand".

Tonight I plan on working on my A & B for the SAL that starts Tuesday. Carolyn has hers done and they look great if you ask me! And Jo, she has had hers done for some time, and is patiently waiting for us.
This week's SBQ was suggested by Von and is:
Many of us have a few pairs of embroidery scissors and some even have
a "collection". How many pairs of scissors do you have? Feel free to
share a photo of your favorite pair or pairs with us!

I have one pair of scissors. A nice sturdy pair of Gingher's. I think that they are called "Lion Tail" or something. They were a present to myself a few years ago. I think that I got them on ebay and didn't pay more than $10 for them including shipping. I only have one fob, I received it as part of an exchange last year from Susan in California. It is very pretty, but is starting to wear so I am making myself a new one! I would love to have a beaded one in pinks and silver with a breast cancer bead, but I don't know where to get one. And matching marking pins! I have fallen in love with marking pins. This is a picture of my scissors, fob and a crocheted dishcloth that I finished recently.

Now I will leave you with a nice picture of two of our girls. I shamelessly interrupted their nap time. Every picture I post of them is about nap time, but honestly, that is what they do 93% of the time. The other 7% of the time is spent running around like lunatics at 11 PM or eating. I just realized that I haven't shown Lady in a while...I will try to get a good snap of her this week. She must be feeling left out.

You Are: 50% Dog, 50% Cat

You are a nice blend of cat and dog.
You're playful but not too needy. And you're friendly but careful.
And while you have your moody moments, you're too happy to stay upset for long.

Okay, off to catch up on some blogs.


Friday, July 28, 2006

The picture that is causing an outrage

I was just logging onto MSN to read some headlines before I eat some lunch and watch Days and caught this story. It is amazing what will offend people. Seriously...this magazine is for women who are having or have had babies. And yet some of them are offended. If you want to read the article on MSN, click here.

Now, I wouldn't consider myself a "lactivist" per se, but I do plan on breastfeeding our baby. Why? Because it is best for baby, mama and it is FREE. I do think that women who breastfeed until the child is beyond diapers is a bit much, but that is just me. I don't know if I would feel comfortable breastfeeding in public myself but I imagine that if covered up discreetly, I could do it. I certainly don't plan on hanging out in the bathroom while the kid is fed. I don't eat in the bathroom and wouldn't make my baby do it. I would consider going to another room in the house if we were visiting friends, mainly because it is a quieter, more relaxed atmosphere. But, they also make breast pumps for a reason. I will have one and plan on using it to be prepared for family outings. Unfortunately bottles are more socially acceptable than a boob.

Yep, I will be a cloth diapering, baby wearing, breastfeeding, granola mama. Suits me.

Wish I could get this to hunt down a way to subscribe online.


***Edited*** I found it, but they don't ship to Saipan. So, I am having it sent to my Dad's house. :)

For more headlines, this story just about makes me sick. Seriously...a 10 BILLION dollar profit?!?! Read article here.

Hell yes, I think that the governement should tax oil profits. And put that tax money into research and development of alternative / sustainable fuel sources. Hah! Who am I kidding, this won't happen anytime soon. Wishful thinking, eh?


Thursday, July 27, 2006

What a day!

Let's start out with happy stuff, okay? Here are some things I found amusing today and observations I have had about life on Saipan for a while:

Street names:

I have to give points to Saipan for actually having street names and coordinating signs. For the most part. It is better than Guam. On Guam, we lived in Yona ("Y" is pronounced as a "J" so it sounds like "Joan-ya") on a little street called Clubhouse Drive. Must be because we lived on a golf course. There was a sign for Fairway Drive, but not Clubhouse Drive. I am glad to know that here on Saipan, I won't have to use the boonie dogs as landmarks. "Turn left at the first boonie dog" is the famous direction that I heard.

Some funny street names that we have seen include: EASTER LP; STRING BEANS LN; and my all time favorite, APPLE PI. I think it is supposed to be short for Apple Place, but we lovingly call it "Apple Pi"...get it like Apple Pie, but pi (3.14159 or the 16th letter of the Greek alphabet). I know, we are nerds.

I think that most mini trucks have some sort of calling to come to Saipan and Guam for their retirement years. You know, those low-rider things that are usually Toyotas that aren't worth $500 but they have a $2,000 stereo system in them. And they want to share the love of music with everyone by turning up the volume so you can hear it a mile away. Unfortunately, I have yet to come across one that listens to NPR, but if any of you little truck drivers on Saipan happen to be reading this, set your dial to 89.1. Thanks much!

Is it sad that I wasthisclose to stopping today at the pregnant boonie dog on my drive home from errands to give her the last of my chicken mc nuggets? I think that the really sad part is that I am selfish and didn't. I feel like an asshole now. There is a pack of boonie dogs that is always chilling at one spot on the side of the road on our way home. One of them, I named her Snoopy, is pregnant. She likes to run after DH in the mornings when he is riding his bike to work. I don't think that she will bite him, but you never know with the boonie dogs.

For the mainlanders, a boonie dog is basically a dog that is of mixed breed, almost always in a state of pregnancy/nursing / mating and does not necessarily belong to anyone in particular. A boonie dog may go their entire life without seeing the inside of a Vet's office. But boonie dogs are smart. Our dog, Lady is a boonie dog. Unfortunately, she wasn't so smart and got her ass captured and turned into the animal shelter in Guam. But that was her lucky day because she became our pet while we were volunteering at GAIN.


I finished stitching my top secret project! And it is in the mail. But like a moron, I was so busy rinsing it, ironing it and packaging it up, I failed to obtain a snapshot of it. Not like I will share it yet anyway. Oh well, it is on it's way winging over the water now. I will just ask the recipient to please take a photo of it when it arrives. It turned out cute. When I showed it to DH he said "That's nice, it is one of those things." Since I can almost read his mind, I said "A sampler?". He said, "Yeah! A sampler."

I have some WIP's that I need to work on and I am going to start on my SAL with Carolyn & Jo. My fabric arrived for A & B so I am going to give it a go in the next day or so.

I got my Village of Hawks Run Hollow in the mail! Yahoo! And they packaged it in a very sturdy carboard envelope thingy...much better than 123stitch's bubble envelope. I might be shopping with them more often!

By the way, go take a peek at the new stuff at Prairie Schooler. I love the autumn one. Absolutely gorgeous! And while you are there, check out the new freebie design. Too cute!


Today was my appointment. We got to hear the heartbeat and that was simply amazing, to be blunt! It was wooshing away so fast in there. I was not impressed with the doctor and will request another one next time we go (in 4 weeks). I was very disappointed to learn today that according to this doctor, they do not do ultrasounds at all during the pregnancy unless there is a problem. Boy did that ever burst my bubble. He said some other things that I thought were ridiculous and once we got into the car, I was in tears. I had been looking forward to an ultrasound near 20 weeks so much! Granted, I am glad that there is no "need" for one since I am not having problems, but an ultrasound is almost like a rite of passage for my generation during their pregnancies. I wanted ultrasound pictures to put in the baby book, damn it!

I am thankful that we did hear the little heart wooshing away in there. That was cool.


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Man oh Man

I so want this:

see what I want

Prolly can't get free shipping to BFE though.

Oh well.


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Corn Bread

Since I spent the vast majority on Messenger this morning with Stels, I felt I ought to do something house-wifey today. I was straightening up the kitchen. And I mean that in the loosest sense possible. Putting away the toaster and wiping up the counter basically. Later I plan on making some cookies or brownies, but I came across this recipe that is scribbled on a scrap of paper (DH's doing) and thought I would pass it along. Besides my robot is vaccuming the dog hair off the tiles right now.

Now, if you like cornbread, you will probably like this. It is a little spicy (which you can control), and the consistency is a little softer, not quite like pudding...hard to describe. Certainly not dry like most cornbreads out there. Give it a whirl, it is good! I have been living on the stuff for the past few days so I know.

Oh, by the way...about the recipes that I post / use. They won't be low fat or low cal. Sorry. That doesn't happen on my watch. If I am going to go through the effort to make it, I want it to taste good.

Corn Bread

1 c butter, melted
1 c sugar
4 eggs
1 can of corn (can probably use creamed)
1 can of chopped chilies
1 c cheese, shredded (sharp cheddar tastes great)
1 c flour
1 c cornmeal (we use Bob's Red Mill or something)
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt (we use kosher)

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Mix your wet ingredients together. Mix your dry ingredients together. Add your dry to your wet and mix completely. Grease a baking dish (8 x 11) and bake at 300 degrees for abut 1 hour or until top is brown and toothpick comes out clean. I usually cut while hot.


I'm still here

Our weekend wasn't very exciting, but exactly what I needed. Well, that and a big plate of boiled shrimp and lobster. And a vodka gimlet. Okay, so I don't really need the gimlet, it just sounds really good right now. I live vicariously through DH right now and just smell the drinks that he has. Surprisingly enough, I have been enjoying the smell of a beer. Never thought that would happen!

Want to know what my Sunday was like? Okay!

Wake up around 7. Go back to sleep. Wake up close to 10. Get up, make a cup of decaf-organic-fair trade-coffee and pour myself a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats. Scarf that down while reclining on the bed (I don't know if I have ever eaten in bed before), and reading a book that Jenn sent me. Lay there for a while watching TV with DH while he eats the left overs from our Thai lunch the previous day. Fall asleep. Fade in and out of consciousness. Sleep until 4 PM! I could not believe it! I haven't slept that much in forever. At least since I was single and weekends started on Wednesdays with quarter drafts at Shooters. For the remainder of the day I tried to get my brain wrapped around the fact that I just wasted the whole day! This picture pretty much sums up how I felt about it:


My appointment is this Thursday. I had to change it from last Thursday because DH was in a class and we like to go together (at least I think that we do). I *think* that I may have been feeling a little bit of movement. Hard to tell. I know it is still a little bit early and it may be wishful thinking, but I get a little giddy when it happens. It's probably just gas and I'm an idiot :)

I have been having bizarro dreams lately.

1) DH went and bought a hoopty brown Mercury Grand Marquis (you know the big old boat) that was in mint condition. I named it the "Poopty Hoopty". He financed it for $18,000. Then he went and adopted this little boy who had some dermatological issues on his face. I said some very mean things to DH about the baby which were totally uncalled for and I am embarrassed now so I won't share here. But, let me just throw this disclaimer out: it was not at all against adoption. I had decided long ago that I thought adoption was great and was a path we would pursue in the event that we were infertile. Basically it was me reverting into my old self...the shallow catty bitch. Anyway back to the dream... Then he went out and bought a new VW Bug. Yellow with a black top. Not a convertible. And he wouldn't let me drive it! I could only drive the Poopty Hoopty. And for some reason I must have been stuck on $18,000. He financed the VW for that as well. Kinda funny considering we paid off our car this summer and for the first time since I bought my own car (stupidly ordered the Chrysler PT Cruiser with all the bells and whistles the first year they came out) in 2000...I / we are car-payment free and it is fabulous!

Oh yeah, BTW...the baby hated me and only liked DH. Freak.

2) For some reason I was back home in Illinois at one of the hospitals in town (we have 3, as a nurse, I always have to throw that fact out there) having a stent put in my bladder because of issues I had been having. When I woke up from the anesthesia the doctor was doing an ultrasound of my belly. Man she was a nice doctor. I basically begged her to be my new OB since I don't currently have one to call my own and she reluctantly agreed even though she despises the military insurance plan. Reimbursement issues I would imagine. Hey, it is better than most out there! Anyway, as she was doing the ultrasound, she said "Well, your baby weighs 6 pounds". I was shocked! Shocked, I tell you! I said, "6 pounds...already? I haven't even gained any weight." She said, "Yep... and it will be here in 30 days." To which I cried out, "Oh no, not 30 days. We are doing something very important then. Are you sure 30 days? Did I calculate wrong all this time? Am I further along than I thought?". *Poof* she was gone and I woke up all kinds of stressed out.

3) Then there are the ever-present spider dreams. Y'all, I hate spiders like nothing else. I can handle the tiny ones, but when they get bigger than the size of my pinky nail...creeps me out. And my dreams always have the ginormous ones that are all kinds of furry. Some kind of tarantula mutation or something. Like they need a haircut. It is those dreams that wake me up in the middle of the night wondering why I am dreaming them and if indeed there is a spider crawling on me or in the bed.


I am working on a top secret project for the next day or so. I really wish I could show pictures, but it is a present that is long overdue for someone that I think reads this blog so I have to keep my trap shut and camera firmly stowed. I promise to show pictures once it is received. Here is a little teaser: It is a Bent Creek and I am doing it over one on 28 count monaco. Stay tuned.

Jo, thanks for your offer, I do appreciate it and I may take you up on it sometime. I think that I have it sorted out for now. Thanks though!


Our power rates have officially gone up. OSB wrote a good post about it on his blog. Be sure to check out the comments section...there was a good posting from "that guy". He made some very good points. Especially about educating consumers. There is a ton of electricity waste here that is unnecessary. I was surprised when we moved into our house that there weren't any ceiling fans. We had discussed buying one and putting it in the living room since that is the largest space, but we have vaulted ceilings that are slanted and it would end up being a huge hassle. Besides our landlord has way more important things to worry about than installing a ceiling fan for us.

DH mentioned a couple weeks ago about us getting some solar panels while we are here. I think that it would not be beneficial for us to do it since we are only here for 2 years. And who knows how much they would cost to ship over, and if the idiot movers could pack them well enough so that they didn't break when we left. Since we know that we wouldn't get our money's worth out of them to use them here and sell them when we left.

Seems that the Government isn't willing to look at other options. No, they would rather do something down the line that just seems dirty & dishonest to me. And it kills me that the Governor is talking about it in the paper! Reminds me of when people would buy things on base at the Commissary or Exchange for people who don't have priviledges. Borderline abuse if you ask me. Just my opinion.


Saturday, July 22, 2006

Damn You, MCG Textiles!

Damn you straight to hell! I have spent the better part of my "stitching time" today preparing for my start of the Rainbow Gallery SAL ( I decided to make use of the day by starting C & D since I am waiting for my A & B fabric to arrive). I got the fabric out (MCG Textiles Blue 32 ct), measured it and cut it to the dimensions that Erica Michaels recommends, then I stitched the edges to prevent fraying. Then, I spent at least 30 minutes looking at the Splendor Silk color cards online deciding on conversion colors because as I have previously stated, I am not Mrs. Gottrocks and am not willing to lay down the $ for the real deal. DMC works just great for me.

Then, I sat down to stitch. And got up to help with dinner. Then to put a movie in. Then to help DH decide which children's books to add to the baby registry. Then to play with the kittys for a minute. And then back to stitching. The directions had me puzzled for bit. I found the center of the fabric and marked it with an x, then I counted 12 threads and basted a line. The next part of the directions said to center your stitching. Well, was I to center it again or just start from the basting line? After much deliberation and more time spent on the computer looking at the Erica Michaels pictures of the finished book along with Jo's first 2 letters (the April 16 entry) , I decided to start stitching at the line that I basted. But centered. Clear as mud, eh?

But, that wasn't my problem. See, I had heard this legend of the bad fabric. The kind where you prep and prep and stitch only to find out that the fabric itself is seriously jacked up. Maybe you have heard the tale as well? It seems to only afflict linens in the tales I have heard. Let me tell you IT IS TRUE! There are linens out there that say that they are 32 count, and they are - going in one direction. But they are a different count going in the opposite direction. Take my picture for example.

The stitch count for this is supposed to be 53x53. A perfect square. Does it look square to you? No siree. Appears rectangular to me. It is 32 count going across, but going up and down it is 28 count. This is a different fabric than what I used for my previous finish (see last post). I got this MCG textiles fabric in a package at Michael's or something when we lived back in the States and thought it would be good to have in my stash.

Damn it! Now I am back to the drawing board. Baaahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!


Seems that the power rate hike of 100% is has everyone up in arms. Read a great article that sheds some light on life on Saipan here.

This is another article from the paper today. What I don't understand is that the power is supplied by gasoline, and gasoline prices have gone up since 1989. So why weren't these rate increases passed along to consumers this whole time? No, let's just do it all at once 17 years later. Can't wait to see what the crime / theft rate goes up to with people trying to make ends meet and put food on the table.


Friday, July 21, 2006

Yay! Fun Mail Day!!!!

Today was a great mail day! I got tons of stuff!

The most recent issue of UK Cross Stitcher from my BF Stels, who isn't a stitcher but I am hoping someday to lure her to the dark side. : ) I had to sit down and go through it as soon as it came, found a few charts already that I need to stitch. Thanks again, Man! I love surprises! And your cards, as usual...they said it all.

A great RAK package from Jenn! I love to read and somehow she has picked up on this tidbit about me. She sent me the 2 books, a cute kitty card and 2 charts. I had the 4 My Boys one on my "watch" list on eBay. Guess I can take it off now, huh?! And I had never seen the "Kitty Litter" chart before...too cute! I am already thinking about stitching it up and substituting a couple of heart buttons instead of the mini kitty ones. Thanks so much, Jenn! You are so very generous. I have already started reading "P.S. I Love You". Yeah, the pregnant lady was crying in the first dozen pages already, LOL. (It starts out kinda sad)

I got an eBay win. Everyone raves about Yoga, so I thought I would give it a whirl. No better time than when you are carrying your first child, right? : )

We got a big box of goodies from Dad & J. They sent a note with it that was so freaking adorable that it is definitely going into the baby's scrapbook. They are so excited to be Grandparents. I had told them a while back to watch the auctions and estate sales for a usable bean crock or bean pot. DH really really wanted to find one before we came over here, but we couldn't. So, they found one and surprised him with it. J also sent us a t-shirt, hat, koozies and sunglasses with the Miller Lite Logo on them. Pretty neat. Best part about the whole package...Landjaegers! I love those stinky things. I immediately cut open the package and put them in a paper bag and into the refrigerator they went. Only after that whirlwind of action did I think, "Dang, I should have taken a picture of them so everyone would know what I am talking about." Oh well. Everyone just needs to take a road trip to Wisconsin to get some. And then keep heading north, and we can visit Kim!

I finished this tonight. It is from the Waxing Moon Designs "Good Sports". I stitched it on 28 ct. linen leftover fabric in my stash. It is for my In-Laws. You ought to see some of the fish that my FIL catches on the river! Monsters, I swear! Now I am in a framing dilemma. I really want to frame it for them, but I don't know of any framers here on Island. Is it tacky to send it to them unframed with some money towards a frame of their choice and the name & number of a good framer? I figure that they will hang it on their enclosed porch and the only reason I wanted to frame it under glass was because some of the people that come over smoke and don't bother to go outside. What do y'all think? Tacky or no?

Next I am going to start working on my Rainbow Gallery SAL. I think that I will have to start with C & D to begin with since I am waiting for my fabric for A & B to arrive. Kim - I still have "Twinkle Twinkle" basted on the scroll rods...just lost my momentum for that one right now. I plan on picking it up again in the next week or two.


I really wanted to go swimming to our little beach that we like to go to, but I read in the paper that something like 24 beaches are red flagged due to contamination so maybe next weekend. Read about it here I wonder if the tourists know about the contamination? I would be very pissed if I went to a tropical island for vacation and came home with a screaming case of e.coli.

Yeah, our electricity rates are going to double and that really stinks. We would be paying $18/month in Louisiana for what we are going to be paying over $100 for here. Read about it here

And if that weren't enough...our gas rates were hiked up again. Regular is now $3.519. If you want to see the other rates, read about it here. I graduated in 1995 and gas that year at the little Mobil station was $1.17/gallon. And everyone talked about how outrageous that was. Good thing that DH rides his bike to work, and when we do use the car, it just sips the gas. Honda's rock!

Oh, more thing. We had an earthquake on Wednesday night. Not an uncommon thing around here. I certainly didn't feel it. It was a 4.8. I think that people that live in apartment buildings and work in office buildings probably felt it, but I didn't know until I read it in the paper. Read about it here


Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Too good not to pass along

I can't believe that I forgot to post this recipe in my last post. I made this over the weekend and it is so delicious, I could just grab a spoon and eat the container. Great over ice cream or with fresh fruit dipped in it.

Hot Fudge Sauce

1 c. chocolate chips
1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
2 T butter
2 T water
1 t. vanilla (oops I forgot that this weekend)

In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt the chocolate chips with the sweetened condensed milk, butter and water. Stir frequently. Once melted completely, beat with a wire whisk and stir in vanilla. Serve warm.

Can be refrigerated for a week in a plastic container with a tight fitting lid. To reheat, only scoop out however much you want into a seperate dish and heat that in the microwave on high for 30 second intervals until warm.




I almost have a finish! Whee! This one is by Waxing Moon Designs and it is in the "Good Sports" leaflet. There is another one in there about golf, but since I don't know any serious golfers, it will be in the trade pile soon. All I have left to do is the fishing pole, line, basket and attach my cute cute cute JABC trout & lure buttons. I am stitching it on some random 28 ct linen from the stash.

I am about dying of startitis. I want to start so many things, it is killing me. Lately it has been "Houses of Hawk Run Hollow". I have the chart and I just need to locate some 40 ct linen for it. Oooh, I got confirmation that my order for "Village of Hawk Run Hollow" has shipped. Anyone that is still looking for it, I ordered mine from All Stitched Up and got it for $17 something with shipping (I think). Fantastic steal for a chart that goes normally for $30+.


Well, I guess that we are into the rainy season here. I am enjoying it. The weather is a bit cooler and I *actually* like rain. The smell of the rain is much better than the smell of the people in the neighborhood that refuse to pay for garbage service and actually burn their garbage instead. Yes, I know who it is and I just shake my head. Even though they are burning plastic. And probably styrofoam plates.

Please disregard the overgrown lawn in the picture. Our lawn care is included in our lease. The lawn guy is officially off the Christmas Card List this year. A bit harsh you may say but I will disagree. We moved in at the end of April and the yard was freshly trimmed. He has been here twice since then. Yes, twice. If anyone has forgotten, we are in the middle of July now. And they don't trim it with normal lawn mowers. No they use rigged up weed-whackers here. They like to call them bush cutters. Well, if ya didn't let it get so long, maybe you could use a regular mower and call it a lawn, instead of bush cutter. Call me crazy.


I wish that we got home delivery. DH has been going to a class every day that is the opposite way of the post office and I am waiting very impatiently for some items to arrive. So I will wait. Impatiently.

I forgot to mention in my last post that this weekend we went to Blockbuster (yes, we actually have a Blockbuster!) to look for a new movie. Blockbuster is where we buy our movies. And we get them cheaply. How you might ask? Well, they have a whole wall of "previously viewed" movies that are bargain priced. I don't have to be the first person to remove the wrapper on a movie and if it saves us $10, then that is even better. I found "The Family Stone" and thought it looked good. I for some reason remembered hearing decent things about it. The sticker price was $7.99. When they rang it up, it was only $4.99! Alas, "The Family Stone" sucked. I thought it was so promising with Sarah Jessica Parker, Diane Keaton, "Coach" Craig T. Nelson and Diane Keaton in it. It just dragged on and on. Sarah Jessica Parker was the wrong person for that role. Although I have to say the best character was the Mom, played by Diane Keaton. She was a hoot!

Okay, I am tired of fighting with Blogger, trying to upload my photos. I have been thinking about how to apply the knowledge that another blogger left for me one other time I was having problems uploading (the photos have uploaded, they just don't show) and I think that I figured it out! Now, I just don't know why the picture is ringed in blue (the weather one), maybe it will be fine once I publish. I am sick of HTML so that's it for today!

Off to watch Days and stitch :)


Monday, July 17, 2006

Where the hell have I been?

If you can't get the video to work (my first time trying to link a google video), click here

Evidently, this video has been out for over a year. I just found it in the last couple of weeks. Of course I had to email it to some of my friends. If you want to see how funny this kid is, just click the play button and make sure that you have your sound turned on. Funny thing is, there are tons more kids out there imitating this kid. Never fails to make me laugh. Especially with the eyebrow raising.


I didn't do much this weekend. Strike that. I didn't do any. I did start on one for my In-Laws that is perfect. I think that I will work some more on it today and post a picture of it tomorrow.


Did I ever mention that there are tons of rats here? At least where we live. Probably doesn't help that on one side of our property, there is what seems to be an abandoned structure (possibly a tin house) that is slowly being overtaken by jungle growth. Yesterday, we were sitting at the dining room table, eating lunch and DH says, "Hey look" as he is pointing out the sliding glass door into the backyard. My first thought was, "Oooh, a baby bunny, hope Lady doesn't see it." What I initially thought was a bunny was actually a RAT!!! Gross! It ran into a hollow spot in one of the trees in our yard. Later when we were outside trimming some small branches and these root type of vines that grow down, Lady was all about the hollow hole in the tree. DH decided to poke his hiking stick into the hole and out came the rat. Lady was all about it, poor rat didn't even have a chance. She was on it in an instant. All I could say was, "No Lady...don't let it bite you, they carry diseases, don't eat it!" As the rat was squealing in her mouth. She didn't eat it, in fact as soon as she dropped it and it was confirmed dead, DH scooped it up with my hedge clippers and took it across the yard and chucked it into the abandoned lot. Thank goodness there is a fence seperating our yards. We did put rat poison in the garage about a month ago. When we moved here, we stocked up on our Eukanuba dog & cat food and shipped a ton of it over with our household goods. Well, a critter tried to get at it and I decided then that the rats had to go. Nevermind the fact that they carry diseases.


I spoke too soon about the fab weather on Saturday. The hotness has returned. It was kind of overcast for a while in the morning, so when the power went out at 10 am, we decided to go to American Memorial Park and Museum. Can I just say kudos to whomever thought of and executed this for the public. It is a great park with lots of marble memorials to the service personnel and the locals that died here during WWII. Then there is the museum. What a great experience even though the sound effects and flashing "bomb explosion" lights get to be a bit much if you want to stop and read every one of the dioramas. That is a great place and the best part is that it is free. There is a donation box if you should be so inclined to support the fantastic community service that it provides. We didn't stick around to watch the movie because it would have been a 20 minute wait and my blood sugar was bottoming out quickly.

Of course, like a dumbass, I forgot my camera so I guess we will just have to go back so I can get some pictures!


Saturday, July 15, 2006

Sooo nice

The weather here is sooo nice right now.

Cool & Rainy. Just my speed.

I have decided that the last couple of posts are not going t be repeated again. This is a blog for me, my friends and family and sometimes I get a little carried away in the "ranting" venue. If I have something to say about local issues & politics, I will try to keep it at the end of the post.


On another note, I was saddened to read this morning on a message board that Nancy Wigman, the designer of 4 My Boys, is going to be retiring. :( When I got into counted cross stitch in 2000 or so, it was one of her designs that I chose to do. I had mainly only done embroidery (pillowcases, table runners) and some stamped cross stitch as a young teen. My Mom used to buy me the little kits at Wal Mart or something. I know that she said she never liked CCS because it was "too hard". She hated the counting and keeping place aspect. Anyway, back to my 4 My Boys story.

I was working for a local Dermatologist near a chic little shopping center back home and I had spotted a needlework shop. I decided one day on my lunch break to wander down there. It was like I had come home! So many models and charts & fibers galore. If y'all ever find yourselves in Rockford, IL, I highly recommend stopping by The Needle & I on Alpine Road in the Edgebrook Shopping Center. So, I found this design. I think it was called "Star light, Star bright". One of the shop ladies helped me out. I chose to do it exactly as the model on the chart cover was done. That meant doing it on 28 ct. linen (eep!) and all of the Weeks Dye Works and Caron Wildflowers. I think that I dropped $40 on that project alone. Which is alot to me now with all of the competitive online places and ebay. Especially for that little project. I do remember asking if I could just use "that floss you get at Wal Mart", and the sales lady looked almost snubbed. She replied, "Well, you could but it wouldn't be the same as how the model is stitched." Now each Weeks Dye Works was like $2 a skien and the Caron's were $4 (I think) so she knew I was going to drop a little $ by doing it the way the designer did.

And I am glad that I did. I have yet to finish this into anything. It sits all nice and pressed in my finish box, waiting patiently. I put this aside for a few years while I went through some painful personal issues and got discouraged by the 2 over 2 counting. I finally finished it last fall. I loved doing the Turkey Stitch on the ends of the scarf.

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This is another one I did last year as a present for my Aunt and her family. I thought that the fabric was cute even though the bias tape edge was a struggle so I ended up hand stitching it. It was well received :)

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I have a few more of her designs in my stash...not nearly all of the ones that I want to do though.

I really wanted to start on my 2 letters for the Rainbow Gallery SAL that I am doing with Carolyn & Jo, but in re-evaluating my 32 ct fabric stash, I decided that the first 2 letters should be done on more of an ivory like recommended and not a putty or a clay. So, I bought some off of ebay yesterday and it should be here hopefully next week. If it gets too close to our Aug 1 "official" start day, I might just do C & D first and then do A & B when the fabric arrives. Carolyn has a great start to her letters and Jo is patiently waiting for us to catch up.


Today I am 99 days pregnant. I can't believe that we are in the second trimester already. The whole conversion of months to weeks is so confusing.

Week 1-4 month 1
Week 5-8 month 2 >1st trimester
Week 9-13 month 3

Week 14-17 month 4
Week 18 - 21 month 5 > 2nd trimester
Week 22 - 25 month 6

I am still not up to the same weight as I was at my first appointment. About 2 kg short actually. But, I did gain a pound this last week that I had initially lost.

My next appointment is on the 20th and I am going to pray that we hear a heartbeat! Some girls have already had a few ultrasounds. I only will only have one most likely.

We have decided that we will start shopping for the baby stuff once we come back from our trip to Australia. No point in getting it now to sit here and wait for 5 months. And I have a list of things that I want to buy. This is something that I totally plan on buying. I plan on wearing our baby most of the time, especially when we are out. Who wants to carry around a giant carseat thingy with a handle on the top that is a pain in the neck and heavy? Not me. Besides, we are planning a bunch of trips and this would be so convenient. And I have read that babies like to be squished in and close to the body. Something about feeling like they are still in utero. Did I mention that it is convenient for nursing? There are just so many positives. I might just have to get DH one of his own so he can share the load sometimes (if I can stand to give up the baby). Something in a more masculine print. Doubt that he really wants flowers but knowing him, he wouldn't care.


Anyone else quite concerned about what is going on in the Middle East? We don't get Headline News, only Fox News for the most recent news and I usually catch part of the O'Reilly Factor (insert groan) at some point in the day. Man, this guy is certain that we are on the absolute brink of WWIII. That is a very frightening thought.

There is a new schedule out for our power outages and according to the schedule I saw in the paper yesterday, we won't be affected anymore, WAHOO!!! But, DH told me at dinner last night that from what he understands, the rolling blackout thing will be continuing for another 3 months.

Here is the link to yesterday's front page

One of my favorite aspects of the daily newspaper is the opinions & letter to the editor section. I thought that this was a good opinion from yesterday that discusses "non-essential government offices". Kinda funny and thought provoking.

Did I mention that I rock? Yeah, I fixed the computer :)


Thursday, July 13, 2006

Our computer has issues. This will be short and sweet, y'all.

I shook my head in disbelief when I read this article in yesterday's paper:

Reyes: Govt's retirement share will still go up (click on the link to read the article)

The government employs a HUGE amount of the local population. I don't know the exact figures but it seems that everyone works in some branch of island government or another.

So, if I am understanding this correctly, the government contribution to the employees retirement fund is currently at 24% and is going to go up to 29%?

Are you freaking kidding me?

Do you want to know how much the United States Coast Guard contributes to their employees retirement fund?

Zero, zilch, nada. Which is why we stopped contributing to DH's retirement through the USCG. Our money is better served in our Roth IRA's and a couple of other funds. Thank you Suze Orman for that tip.

This just floors me.


Yesterday, I wrote about how the crying to Washington, D.C. for money would soon begin. Well, it did as I was typing my little blurb.

Feds' aid sought for CUC

The more I thought about the whole situation, it seems that it boils down to this:

1. The CUC (Commonwealth Utilities Corp, a government run business) has no money for backup.

2. Therefore, it relies on customers to make timely payments so that it can then turn around and hand over the money to big oil for more fuel to run the power engines.

3. Customers aren't paying their bills on time for whatever reason...maybe they can't afford it and only make minimum wage (which by the way is $3.05/hr).

4. The CUC is going to raise rates so that they don't continue to lose money because it actually takes more money to produce the power than what they are charging since oil prices have been going up.

Ya think that the people that can't afford to pay their bills on time now are going to find their money trees blossoming in their yards any time soon so that they can afford to pay the higher rates? It will only get worse. Maybe they should hire more government employees for the CUC since I think that their collections department is going to be very busy in the future.

And another round of the blame game begins. The island government needs to run CUC like a business. They need to realize that they screwed up and should have been adjusting the rates all along as they watched oil prices climb to over $70/barrel.



Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Oh Funding Fairy...we need you!

Want to know what has my panties in a bunch today? The power outages that is what!

Read about it here:

Power Outages to Worsen

I think that my favorite sentence from the whole story has to be this:

"Guerrero said their collections are low during certain periods of the month as most customers do not pay on regular due dates but rather wait until the day before disconnection."

And obviously, the government has no back-up plan other than to continue to tell the garment factories and the hotels to use their generators to provide power to their businesses. Oh, can't forget the plan to cry to their pals in Washington, D.C. that they are broke.

So, every day now (except Sundays) we will be without power at our house from 10 am to 12 pm. I guess it could be worse...I would be right pissed if the power was scheduled to be out from 8pm to 10 pm during the week. I like to watch "Hell's Kitchen" whenever I can catch it and am looking forward to "Big Brother".

If you want to see what the schedule looks like, click here

Come on privatization! I did not mind writing my monthly check out to Commonwealth Edison or Entergy when we lived back in the States. At least we had power every single day. Something needs to be done.

If you would like to read today's development, click here. I find it funny that the island government has "reportedly exhausted its credit line with the oil supplier and has to pay in cash on delivery". Hmm, sounds like the people learned from their leaders in this situation.

Anyone got 2.5 million bucks laying around they can wire us before July 17 so that we can pay Mobil for some more oil?

Of course it would have to be Mobil that we get the oil from. The one company that DH & I avoid like the plague. Being the tree huggers that we are.

We do our part to cut energy consumption costs. We unplug our stove, microwave, any clocks that aren't being used, the tv and have replaced all of our bulbs with energy efficient ones that will probably outlive us, and I use the clothes line for 95% of our clothes drying. We average 450 kwh of consumption every month.


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

This is ridiculous!

I thought that I would like to get the BOAF "Grandmother Sampler" that I recently saw on ebay, so on the watch list it went. According to the auction, it was OOP (Out of Print) and rare. Last time I looked it was at $13. I guess I didn't realize it was $93 worth of rare! If I were the seller, I would have probably peed on myself. This is the link to the auction

Seriously, $93 for ONE pattern? Sounds like BOAF is starting to get like some of the older Prairie Schoolers. Wait until Christmas time and you will see the Prairie Schooler "Christmas Village" going for $40 or more. Thankfully, it is already in my stash. And the ugly Rainforest Afghan. My apologies and condolences to those that love it but I have heard of people paying $60 for the booklet for that.

If the designers (especially Prairie Schooler) would reprint some of these designs, they would be making the profit instead of stitchers that buy a bunch and sit on them for a couple of years.

I saw this chart at Shakespeare's Peddler the other day and thought it was so cute. DH has yet to do any diving here. MIL is going to be taking some lessons so that they can go diving when she comes to visit. DH used to dive all the time when he was stationed in Washington State. But, it is a totally different spectrum here. I guess WA is more cold water type diving. God knows that my behind is not going diving at all. Ever. It is all I can do to snorkel. That whole fear of open bodies of water thing doesn't work out so hot living on a tiny piece of rock out in the Pacific Ocean. Anyway, this is a new one by Raise the Roof Designs and I just think it is too cute.

I finished this little ornament last night. Actually it wasn't "finished" until today. I wanted to rinse & press it and then attach the JABC buttons. This was the SAL for the STO group I am in for May. We are doing one ornament from the JCS 2005 issue per month. I did this one on 32ct. linen, millenium blue. I kinda fell behind so I am working on making it up. Plus, I ordered the JABC buttons specifically for this so it wasn't like I could just forget about it. Those little JABC buttons are pricey. And I have decided that they really aren't worth it. The stars for example, I had to turn most of them over because there was a circle indent around where the button holes are. How stupid looking. Like they used some tool to make the button holes and it ended up getting pressed in too hard. The design is by Sam Sarah Designs. This month's design is the Shepherd's Bush one. I think that I will finish this one off like they did in the magazine on a piece of felt. I still have a nice variety of felted sweaters in my stash so one is bound to work well. I will post pictures again when I finish it into an actual ornament. I plan on having a "finishing" day one of these days. Gotta get the completed pieces made up into something.

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Our power was out again for most of the morning. So, I sat down on the floor of our office/craft room and sorted through my fabrics and put the different counts into bags to clean up the fabric drawer. I have a ton of 28 count! And it is mostly ivory or cream color...blah. Very small variety of colors. Then I set about cleaning the room. I have a stack of charts that is about to topple over on my sewing table that need to be sorted and put into binders, but I have run out of plastic page protectors. :(

I was going to make brownies this morning...I so had the urge to bake but the power went out (and our stove is electric) so that put the kabosh on the brownie making. I'm not in the mood anymore.

Tomorrow I am going to sit and really read the directions for our Rainbow Gallery SAL. Thank you, Jo for pointing out the directions to me. I didn't realize that there were directions...I thought we had to wait until the stuff came out at the LNS for the finishing techniques. I have my biggest cuts of 32 ct set aside and will start looking at the different floss colors and see which cuts to make into the appropriate size for the book. I have a giant piece of millenium blue and am hoping that it works out to be able to use some of it for that. Not to mention the giant piece of Belfast natural in my stash.


Monday, July 10, 2006

I want the rain to come back

I think that I would be able to live in the Pacific Northwest perfectly. I love gray, rainy days. We have been having that weather for the past 3 days and I was getting so spoiled. Plus, it was so nice and cool with the strong wind gusts we had been having. But, alas it is no more. Back to perpetual summer as I type this. The birds are chriping and the sun is beating down. I truly miss the change of the seasons. The weather here is just not natural for this Midwestern girl.

We didn't do a lot this weekend. Mostly just hung around the house which is just how I like to spend my time with DH. I did a tiny bit of cleaning and a little bit of stitching, reading, net surfing, and watching TV. DH had to go to work on Saturday for a while so I met him in there later in the day and we had lunch and did a little bit of grocery shopping. Love the frozen berries at Costco! Surprisingly, Saipan has a Costco. We don't shop there for much more than berries or cheese. Sometimes candy if I can sneak it onto the checkout belt. This time we also had to get a giant sized bag of Prunes. DH has decided that we need to get more fiber in our diet. I don't really think that I have a need for more fiber, but when analyzing our typical food intake for a day...yeah we do come a bit short of the RDA of fiber. I have yet to eat a prune but he did get me to eat some cracked wheat hot cereal with cranberries the other day.

I did order "Village of Hawk Run Hollow" and I got it cheap ! That was going to be the only way I could get it. Besides waiting for someone to hawk their copy on ebay in a few months for a couple bucks less than what it regularly goes for. I was stunned when I was looking at Stitching Bits & Bobs and a couple other sites by the prices of the Village kitted up with the NPI silk threads and fabric! Seriously, some of the places are kitting this up for $180 or so!!! I for one can not imagine laying down that kind of cash on one project. I understand the heirloom issue but I guess I will just use plain ole DMC and order a cut of 40 ct. linen somewhere. Plus, I like to rinse my projects when I am done and then press them on the backside on a towel so that the stitching stands up more. Especially if I have had it mushed in my Q-snaps or scroll rods.

I went through my fabric stash today and pulled out a couple of pieces that I am considering doing my "Mothers Tree" on. I might try to tea-dye some cream colored Monaco. Anyone know if tea dying decreases the strength of fibers over time? I plan on rinsing it thoroughly but am wondering if in 50 years it will have little holes in it or something from the tea dying. I am planning on gridding this because that tree looks menacing to me to begin with. I have never gridded before, so this will be an adventure. I am hoping that I can zip through Mother's Tree so that I can start Houses of Hawk Run Hollow before we go to Australia. Not that I want to take it with me. I think that if I at least have the tree done and have most of Enchanted Alphabet done, then I will start HoHRH before Australia. I need to spend alot less time on the computer though! I don't really need to have 3 BAP's (Big Assed Projects) going at the same time with not a finish in sight.

I also went through my stash with an eye to see how much 32 ct. fabric I have...pretty good amount to begin with for our SAL of the Rainbow Gallery Freebies. I think that I will start my first one sometime this week or this weekend. I am looking forward to seeing Carolyn's progress this month and then next month we actually start the SAL with Jo (who is 2 up on us).

I took a couple of naps this weekend and feel like I could use one today. This is our baby, Bella snoozing with me. She is the only one that likes to cuddle. I don't think that she cuddles DH though.

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Anyone use Mozilla Firefox for their browser? I am thinking that I want to download and install it here. I read that you have less blogger-photo-upload problems with it. I tried to upload pictures for the last couple of posts but once I clicked "Done", nothing happens. So, I had to resort to Photobucket today. I looked in the HTML for this post and didn't see anything that remotely resembeled a photo code. .


Saturday, July 08, 2006

4 Things & Such

Got this from Stels...consider yourself tagged!

4 Things

4 places I have been on vacation:
1. Disney World
2. Thailand
3. St. Lucia
4. Phoenix

4 things I could not live without:
1. My DH
2. A way to communicate with family & friends (phone, net, letters)
3. Ice water
4. Any kind of craft project

4 of my favorite foods:
(being pregnant, my tastes have changed)
1. Fruit
2. Cookies
3. Hamburgers
4. Green olives minus pimento

4 places I would rather be right now:
1. Illinois with my family & friends
2. South Louisiana with my friends
3. St. Lucia
4. Cape May, NJ visiting Katie & Jamie

4 bad habits of mine:
1. Picking out spelling mistakes that others make
2. Swearing like a sailor
3. Procrastination
4. Inability to turn off the brain at night and get some decent sleep

4 people whose advice I would trust on just about anything:
1. DH
2. Grampy
3. Dad K.
4. Staci

4 things I wish I would have never done:
1. Sabotage friendships back in the day
2. Quit ISU
3. Waited until too late to order my "perfect" wedding dress
4. Let others control my life for so long

4 things I hope to see/ do / accomplish before I die:
1. Celebrate 50 years of marriage to DH
2. Meet and love my grandchildren
3. Spend another Christmas in New Orleans
4. Live debt free and off the grid

4 of my favorite smells:
1. DH's aftershave
2. Bread baking
3. Fresh sheets on my bed at Granny & Grampy's
4. Lilly of the Valley


In my post on June 30, I talked about the felted heart that I made. It is a fun craft for people of all ages to do. Also great to recycle old stuff. Here is how you felt things:

Felting is easy once you know how. You may have already done it and not known that you did it!

Basically it is throwing a woolen or cashmere sweater or blanket in the washer on the hottest setting and washing it, then throwing it in the dryer on the hottest setting until dry, be sure to clean out the lint trap every now and then, there are a lot of fuzzies that come off while drying. What you end up with is a much, much smaller version of the original.

I like to go to secondhand shops or thrift stores and get sweaters and blankets very cheaply to use for felting. Once I have washed & dried it (felted it), then what I do is just cut it apart carefully at the seams trying to maintain as much of the "good" material as possible. I typically discard the cuffs, waistband and neckband since they usually contain some type of elastic material. Then just use the "good" material any way you want to.

Voila! That is felting. :) The felt is a bit thicker than the kind that you can buy at the craft stores but it holds up better in the long run. I have made the hearts, pincushions, pet beds and am going to make a small hanging pillow and affix a cross stitch piece to it soon.

Vicki at Turkey Feathers did a project where they felted balls last summer to use for various craft projects. I highly recommend visiting her blog as it is filled with "use what you have" type of crafting. It can take a little while to upload though. She is doing a whole bunch of projects using an old wool blanket.


So, it looks like it will be me, Jo and Carolyn doing the Rainbow Gallery Freebies as a SAL. Ladies, I will email you in just a minute and we can figure out the details. I think that Carolyn & I may have some catching up to do to get to Jo, she is already done with "B". Jo, it looks like you are doing them on the same piece of fabric...? What count are you using? I was thinking of switching mine every now and then as long as they are all the same count, I guess it wouldn't matter.


I finished "Angels & Demons" by Dan Brown (of The Da Vinci Code fame). It was a good book, not quite as controversial as the ideas he put forth in The Da Vinci Code. He must have a thing for Catholicism, I must say. Again you will find the Church at the center of this book. I do have "Deception Point" on the bookshelf here as well, but I want to wait to start it for a while. So, I started "The Shunning" by Beverly Lewis. It is about Amish Life so far and is fiction. I haven't read much of it.

I would like to recommend a great book to anyone that is looking for a financial plan for life. It is "Automatic Millionaire" by David Bach. It basically spells out for you the steps that you need to take to gain financial freedom. DH & I read it while laying on the beach in St. Lucia. When we got home, we put the steps in motion and also bought another one of his books, "Smart Couples Finish Rich". It was a little difficult at first but now, I forget that we are even on our way, it's automatic. For us, it isn't about "finishing rich", it is about having financial freedom. We want to retire in our 40's and own our own home mortgage free before we are 50. If you follow David's steps, you can really do it. It is all about compounding interest. We also watch The Suze Orman Show every week. Yeah, she can be a bit obnoxious at times and most of what she says doesn't apply to us, but we have learned alot. Like stop contributing to your 401k if your employer doesn't match any of it. If you want more information, just email me or let me know.


Thanks everyone who said a little prayer for my Grampy. From what I understand (thanks again, Stels for checking for me), he had a stent put in one of his arteries. And he will be going home tomorrow as long as he does okay tonight. That's all I know. I am a bit disappointed that my Mom has yet to call me about any of this especially after the tirade that she was on when Granny went into the hospital. C'est la vie. I am just so happy that he will be okay. My Grampy means the world to me.

Peace :)

Friday, July 07, 2006

Quick note

Just a quick note from me.

Grampy is now in the hospital. He was having chest pains and so Granny took him to the ER. His blood pressure was elevated and he failed a stress test so they kept him and are doing some other tests. DH was funny last night when he said, "Don't those 2 know that they need to stick around for a while...they have a great grandchild on the way?". Pearls of wisdom, I tell ya! So, please say a little prayer or whatever you do for my Grampy as well as Granny. They are actually pretty young, late 60's & early 70's. I still have great grandparents alive, and my great great grandma died about 16 years ago...I met her once in Florida. They lived in Sarasota. Longevity is in the family.

This is important:
Head on over to Saipan Blog or even to Save the Grotto Blog and help us out a little bit. In a nutshell here is the deal:

  1. Saipan depends very heavily on tourist $$. Mainly Asian tourist $$.
  2. The Grotto is the #2 SCUBA diving spot in the world.
  3. There are approximately 100 stairs (or so) that you have to walk down/up to get to the Grotto proper. *oh no, stairs*
  4. Some entity has decided that it would be beneficial to build a monorail that carries 5 people down to the Grotto and charge them each $10 a trip.
  5. One argument is that the monorail will help divers that aren't physically able to carry their equipment down/up. Seriously...if they aren't physically adept at handling the equipment (I know it is heavy I have this 2 sets of this junk hanging in my spare closet), maybe they shouldn't dive...just my thought.
  6. Instead of trying to compromise the integrity of the environment of the Grotto area by building a monorail, why not charge an admission fee to dive there? We had to pay an admission fee at every one of the 12 National Parks that we went to last year, Disney doesn't let you in for free either. Let the tour companies work the price into their SCUBA package (as long as they are honest and give the $ over to the government)

Problems are:

  1. The environmental impact. Not just pollution of the water from the grease and possible fuel spils but also noise pollution and the impact that the building and installation of said monorail on the fragile enviroment around the Grotto area.
  2. When (notice I didn't say "if" because it will happen) a big assed typhoon comes and destroys the monorail, leaving it a mangled mess half hanging in the water, who is going to fix it, clean it up and repair it or will they just leave it that way like they do other things (I read about a broken bridge in the Grotto somewhere but I haven't actually been down to see it)?
  3. People with disabilities may want to cough up the $$ to take a ride down there but what happens when said person in a wheelchair or whatever gets a little too close to the water and falls in? It isn't like there is a Park Ranger sitting there making sure everyone is safe. Common sense people! I blew out my ACL on my knee 14 years ago while downhill skiing and have had reconstruction don't see me trying to hot dog down some double black diamond trails anymore do you? Accept it, there are some things that you can't do in life.
  4. I know that there are other problems, but enough of my ramblings...get over to Saipan Blog or Save the Grotto Blog and please sign the petition. You can read more about it there.



Thursday, July 06, 2006

Not very exciting here

We had a nice 4th of July. Hung out at the house most of the day and went down to Garapan for the fireworks. They had a little carnival and some local food vendors there. DH got a plate full of food for $4.50. I think that his ribs were actually dog though. And the barbecue sauce looked radioactive. I couldn't find much that looked good to me right now so I ended up with a chicken on a stick...cut up chicken pieces that is barbecued like a shishkabob. Total waste of $1 since it was mostly bones and fat yuck! I also got a piece of local style coconut pie which was quite tasty. Then we went up to DH's office directly across from the festivities. We were 5 floors up so we had a great view of what was happening. After a while we meandered up to the roof for the fireworks. I was impressed with the little show that they had. Much more than what I was expecting. I took tons of pictures (when it wasn't pouring on us). I also told DH that someday I want to watch the fireworks in Boston or Philadelphia.

Here are a couple of my favorite shots:

And the lovely traffic during the fireworks. This is looking north from the roof of DH's office building.

I am thinking that my camera hasn't been functioning to capacity ever since DH slipped off a rock on the Than Sadet beach and accidently got it wet. If you ever get the chance to go to Thailand, I highly recommend going to Ko Phangan (Phangan Island), north of Koh Samui and hanging around there for a few days. The royal waterfalls are really pretty in Than Sadet. Maybe later this week, I will post more pictures of our trip to Thailand last November.

I finished my Patriotic piece. It is "Pray for Peace" by Birds of a Feather (BOAF). I haven't rinsed or pressed it yet. I was going to yesterday when I finished it but of course...the power went out for a couple of hours. By then I had lost the ambition to do it.

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My Granny is home from the hospital and doing okay from what I understand. I haven't had a chance to talk to her yet. I did talk to Mom yesterday for a bit. She says that the Radiation is much harder on her mentally and physically than the Chemotherapy was. Plus they have her on all of these medicines to help her feel better and I don't really think that they are working. She is holding nothing back telling people how she feels. I just listen. She now knows about my youngest cousins pregnancy. The one that was supposed to be a secret. I guess that one of my Uncle's ex's is friends with one of Mom's friends and blabbed it. She is pretty disappointed right now in many things, so I will continue to pray for strength and acceptance for her. Not much more that I can do from here.

Jo if you are interested in picking up the Rainbow Gallery freebie series again, I would like to start stitching them also. I would need a couple of weeks to get caught up to you though: ) Do you know how often they are being released? That way we could figure out some kind of a SAL schedule or night. Anyone else interested in doing this? It is a really cute book once the series is done. Each page is a letter of the alphabet which has a different type of specialty stitch that matches the letter of the alphabet. If you want to see a picture of the stitched model with some more info, click here.

I called yesterday to set up my next OB appointment and found out that my OB's last day was yesterday : ( I am seriously disappointed. He was a very nice guy and I was thinking ahead to the whole labor & delivery scene and loved the fact that he had small hands and fingers. So, I don't know who my new doctor is going to be but as DH said, "That's nice *sarcasm*...well at least it happened now and not further down the road." Too true, honey! Just hope that it isn't a revolving door at that hospital since it is my only choice here.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy 4th of July!

I hope that everyone is having a safe and happy holiday. Please take a minute and remember the people who have fought and are fighting for the rights that we enjoy every day.

Happy birthday to were the cutest baby I have ever seen and I am so glad that I am related to you. I would post her picture here, but I respect her & her parent's privacy and don't know how they would feel about that.

Say a little prayer for my Granny. Grampy had to call 911 last night as she had a reaction in the middle of the night (she has been a diabetic for probably 40 years) and is having a bit of a heart issue. She should go home from the hospital tomorrow.

We are off to watch the fireworks tonight. I am going to try to take some pictures. I am thisclose to finishing my BOAF piece that I started the other day. Watch for a HD tomorrow!

Be safe everyone!

Monday, July 03, 2006

I think my DSL farted

I had a nice post all ready to be saved as a draft and once I hit "save as draft", I got the "page not found" so I hit my back luck. That's island life for ya.

I tried to insert a picture from our webshots album into the top of the blog, but it didn't work. *sigh* eventually I will get it. Thanks for the comments about my "new" look ; )

I finished the first half of the alphabet on Enchanted Alphabet:
So I let myself start a new one, something small in honor of the holiday. It is "Pray For Peace" by Birds of a Feather. I think that it is appropriate. I think that it is a 28 ct. evenweave, ivory color and I am using DMC.
Good thing that I wasn't able to post my last post. I was venting on other military wives that disrespect their DH's, their Country and their DH's boss, the President by voicing their belligerent opinions about the state of the Union and the war in Iraq. And I am a Democrat. I am all for freedom of speech but as a military spouse, there are certain subjects where we should tread lightly.

Anyone stitching the freebies from Rainbow Gallery? I was thinking about doing them as a SAL...any takers? I am hoping to turn them into a book type of thing, they are really cute and introduce you to a new stitch with each letter of the alphabet. I have A-E printed out so far. I am not Mrs. Gottrocks so I can't afford (or really justify) laying out the moolah $$$ for the Rainbow Gallery fibers so I will be using DMC. Ooh, I was just there and saw that they now have the "F" chart up. Wonder if "F" stands for french knot? My arch nemesis...I'd prefer to do the Colonial knot but in the spirit of learning, I will do french knots if it calls for it. That was one of the first embroidery stitches I learned. That and the lazy daisy. Mom used to buy me pillowcases to embroider. I loved doing them!

I need to sell some stash. I want to sign up for the automatics from Elegant Stitch for the Esmeralda's Friends monthly series. It is for a good cause, breast cancer charities. Hmmm, wonder if it could be considered tax deductable? : ) That would be a way to get DH to let me do it. I just have a hard time spending, spending, spending when I am not working. I will have to put together a comprehensive listing. I have some in my photobucket account, but I need to take more pictures. If you go to photobucket, my name is curlystitcher.

Well, I have almost all of my chores done and it isn't even 10 am. One more load of towels to go and finish the dishes. I change our bed linens and towels every Monday, a habit I started once we got married. Helps me feel domestic. Gotta go put the linens out on the line, I don't hear the washer running anymore.


Saturday, July 01, 2006

I have been inspired!

And it started with Jenn. She posted about changing the look of her blog. I have been reading the comments and have looked at a couple of sites. Then I go to Plush...WOWSERS!!! Love the flower at the top. So, I figured I would start small. See if I could handle a change at a time...I will work on changing the picture at the top later. I kinda like it for now. It looks like it is lonely and needs a hug.

I found this template at this website: Pannasmontata Templates

Now, I just need to figure out how to make all of the fonts non-bold. Especially on the sidebar.

Thank you, Jenn for inspiring me :)