15 April 2008

The Beginning of my Cross Stitch Journey

Can you remember your very first journey into the world of cross stitch? Can you remember having no idea of how to start, despite reading the instructions? Do you remember using all six strands of floss and getting into a complete and utter flap? I can, but I can look back on it now and chuckle.

I was looking in my WIP workbox the other day and I came across a cloth bag that I had overlooked for some time. I found something in it that made me laugh out loud. The design is by 'Dimensions' and it was part of their 'Ginger Mouse' series (a series which I think is now obsolete) – this one in particular is entitled 'Ginger Mouse with Apple' – complete with chart, a mounting hoop and the complete set of Anchor Floss cards (apologies for the poor quality pic - don't quite know why the flash didn't go off!)

I remember it as my second attempt at cross stitch and I remember buying the kit in a stitching shop in Nottingham which has long since gone, in about 1994, way before catching the stitching bug in 1997. The front looks innocent enough…you can just about make out the shape of the body and the eyes of the ginger mouse…

….but lurking beneath…(cue the 'Psycho' shower scene music!)…..

Arrrrggh! How awful is that?!?!?! I committed the ultimate cross stitching crime – carrying over the thread more than two stitches. Good grief, it looks like a hammock doesn't it?!

I'm going to keep this out and look at it as often as I can, to remind me of how far I've come in terms of stitching. It's also given me a well overdue reminder that hoping and believing in yourself is a good thing, because no matter what happens, even if everything doesn't go the way you planned it and becomes a tangled mess, if you stick at it, you will get through and all will be well in the end.

Carto xx

07 April 2008

Hello, I'm Back!

Hey all!

I can't believe that my last post was in November - it only feels like yesterday, where's the time gone?!

I'm really sorry if my extended hiatus has concerned or worried any of you. Unfortunately, since I last posted, things haven't been very good, what with my depression, which hasn't got any better, but on the upside hasn't got any worse either, and not nearly as bad as the bout I had back in 2001/2002. It's been an uphill battle to be interested in anything - everything seems such an effort! Summoning up the energy to go to work and come back just about kills me, so surfing on the old net is not something I've kept up with I'm afraid. I can just about cope with checking my emails, and that's about it. Then just as I had got over my kidney infection, I had a really bad dose of the flu, which lasted for most of December - and it's this bout of flu that has really set me back, as my immune system was next door to rock bottom as it was.

Also, work hasn't been too brilliant either, so on the recommendation from my Doctor, which went along the lines of "Please Heidi, find another job for the sake of your sanity", I've updated my CV and it's currently doing the rounds of the local recruitment agencies. I think this girly has reached the end of her tether, what with the low morale and stress of the job, plus the attitude of certain 'colleagues' not related to my team/area of work, who seem to think that I'm their PA. So, to cut a long story short, this girly is shipping out! I am quietly optimistic - I'll keep you posted if anything comes through.

OK, it's been a long time...so where do I start with the piccies? Hmmm...Christmas. Well Fudgie cat volunteered to help me put up the Christmas tree...

As you can see, he volunteered on an 'overseeing developments' sort of basis, i.e. not rolling up his sleeves and actually helping me, but, quite rightly he argued the point that, in fact, he has no sleeves, so begrudgingly I had to agree with him......

...and here he is, inspecting the Christmas tree box...

And finally, here he is 'helping' me to wrap up some presents.....

As you can see, 'overseeing' is tiring work! Aww, he's such a cutie - he's been such a tower of strength to me and sarcasm aside, I don't know what I'd do without him. He's been my friend, my rock and my everything through all of this. All I can say is thank the good Lord for Cats! :-)

As far as the stitching goes, it's really the only thing I have stuck at. Again, my Doctor encouraged me to keep at it, and I'm glad she did, because it helps me to wind down at the end of the day - plus it's something else to focus on. There's so much floating around in my mind right now - the depression, the job situation, also the fact that I'm divorcing husband this year. It's been all to easy to focus on the negative, which is really selfish as there's so many people in this world so much worse off than me - so stitching has really helped. Sometimes I only manage to complete a few stitches, then on the other extreme I can sit down on a Saturday at 11.30am and go right through to 6pm. Here's progress on 'Cat Knot' so far...

It's coming along, slowly but surely...and here's the 'Happiness' sampler. I've not unpicked the huge 'frogged' section yet - instead, I've concentrated on another area. As you can see, I've finished the first line of the saying and I've started stitching in the leaves and acorns that surround it...

Well, that's about it for now. I will try my very best to visit your blogs and return your good wishes - and there are some emails that I have received from you which I've opened, read, thought 'I must reply!' and never returned, so once again, huge and heartfelt apologies if I've seemed very rude. I really didn't mean to come across that way, honest! xxxx

Anyway, much love to you all...and I will be posting more often in future. Thank you for being such good friends, and thank you for thinking about me! This tired old thing really appreciates it.

Carto xxx