Learning by Teaching, Teaching by Learning

HH Fellow MEers!!,

HOW are you doing???!!! I’ve missed hearing from you !!!

Warning….(If you want quick and easy and lots to do with embroidery…skip this blog and wait to read my next one that I will be posting very soon.) Wink

(Sorry on my part because Chatty Cathy wasn’t so “ chatty lately” because I was in summer school…but I’m now back and I’m happy I get to switch gears again- back to machine embroidery that is!!!. Yeah!!!!

I do feel like there are parallels trying to learn to watercolor, blog and do machine embroidering, even though they don’t seem very similar at all. I’ve decided that machine embroidery will bring me joy because I can count on the design looking like the picture …not so for my beginning efforts in water color painting!!!..but OH do I love the magic of those colors (especially water color pencils) coming alive when you add water!!! Now if I just can get my hands to draw what they’re suppose to, I will be one happy camper!

I appreciate so much the DARLING designs the digitizers can do. I want to meet you personally and pick your brain!!!!! How in the WORLD do you do it??? I know that it is way advanced stuff from what I heard, and I am not wanting to do it now…I just want someone to really BLOG on the subject and see HOW in the world you 1st drew the design and then got it to co-operate into a final product!!!

I’m gonna admit out loud right here and now that it’s pretty humbling to be an adult @ a “ kindergarten level” & in more than one area at the same time!!!!... especially - when you are way past kindergarten age!!!! It’s not always so much fun when I’m surrounded by those that DO already paint, compute, ME well, and I’m still fumbling with the basic vocab, tools etc etc etc ( I used to not cook or grow a garden either…& I’ve come a long ways from back then….I Back To Art Classhaven’t burned up 2 stoves since high school!!!)

I’ll also admit I MUCH prefer the feeling I have when TEACHING than I do now, - being an ‘adult student/learner…especially when new areas I know so little about I am either being ‘graded’ and/or have deadlines. Talk about stress city! (Hmmm I wonder if any of this has some ‘control issues’ going…!!!)

It’s probably good though to be reminded how kids & grandkids must feel when they are learning & are expected to learn something new….rather…..lots of ‘some thingS’ plural. Boy there is an awful lot expected now even in kindergarten these days…at least around here! All those tests, benchmarks etc !!!! (Speaking of young ones, I just played my phone messages & there was one inviting me to interview with Nike for an early childhood teaching position.) I’m too hot and too tired to even think about that right now….maybe later….in a year or 200 ???? Huh?

I DO think one of the advantages of ‘learning,’ especially out of your comfort zone & trying ‘new things’( and yes grades and deadlines,) is that I am in high hopes I am stirring up my brain cells that will help postpone dementia etc!!!! Surely…this must be helping some part of my body besides my fingers!!!!

It’s times like this when I remind myself that I was once on a full 4 year scholarship for my bachelor’s degree, I wrote an educational series that was published by the state and later I was selected for a master’s degree program for a rural special ed grant where only 13 people were chosen out of 15 states for the scholarships!….. So my brain cells must have worked at least once there in my life…They just must be dormant now or something!!!) or am I just ‘getting old??””” Parts of me ache, my carpal tunnel is flaring up & the doc thinks I probably have fibromyalgia…etc etc.

( Kidding ( I hope ) aside)… my mom actually had dementia for the last 5years of her life. She did not know me at all for the last couple of them, but would warm a bit when my son took her hand. That was sweet to see as they had been so very close.

One just doesn’t know what’s in our future or our earth timeline….so I think its best that we enjoy what we have now and help others along the way too if we can.

I know when I had “low kids” in my classroom I’d ALWAYS start out day one saying…”You ALL need to know that everyone one in here is talented and gifted!! Yes you heard me right…you are ALL talented & gifted….We may learn at different speeds and in different ways…but we are ALL TAG in one way or another (maybe not by what the schools’ TAG”definition was), but believe me…each of you are talented and gifted.!!!” ….. and I meant it!!! & they knew I meant it!! We approached the school year knowing we WOULD accomplish whatever we set out to do individually and as a classroom…behavior included!

I ‘d also share with them that I had been in a bad car accident once (when I was at the tail end of working on a master’s degree in special education (full time nights) and how I had forgotten how to spell EVERYTHING & how I could not remember a single person’s name, lost many vocabulary words & my thinking was very ‘delayed’ . ( to put it mildly ) etc etc !!!. I had to relearn the VERY basics…names, how to spell the colors, learn to add etc etc….It was an awful time in my life & it was so hard on me on so many levels….I couldn’t drive, my son was with his dad and I didn’t get to see him at all…. I don’t need to go into more gory details…..but you get the picture.

I literally got down to my very last dollar that year. It was such a horrible feeling…alone, in constant major pain, barely able to walk to the bathroom, etc etc) . I could no longer teach (for the rest of that year & then only very part time the following year in a classroom the teacher did not want to share.) I will never ever forget getting down to that last dollar & not knowing when I could ever work again.

Anyway….I survived…It took a long time to heal and it didn’t happen overnight, but years later my life completely turned around…& now, most of my hopes and dreams do turn out. I am not afraid to dream big and believe it can all come true. It is SO fun to think of something and then work towards it & have it come to pass.

I SO appreciate the good that can come on a daily basis.

I so appreciate kindness. I love and appreciate a good husband who loves and supports me. I am grateful to have a son who has turned out so well and is living a full & productive life. I’m grateful for the beautiful people and things that have come into my life…and am so grateful for the abundance I now have.

I don’t mean to be bragging here at all…It’s just that perhaps someone reading this or who met me, might have thought that my whole life has been ‘charmed’ or something. I’ve had an exciting life…no doubt about it, but it was hardly ‘rosy’ the entire time. Nope, but there IS daylight at the end of some dark tunnels if we just keep the faith. We don’t know what life will bring us….but I feel so strongly that through education & work, one can really help their situation & turn things around. 

The only reason I am sharing this saga is that, with the tough times we're in, there just might be someone on Ann’s site who might be at a low financially, healthwise or emotionally right now…& I guess I want to be somewhat of a cheerleader here saying…”things CAN turn around”!!!!!! I’m living proof of it. It would take another day of your life reading how things turned around for me, but to those of you who DO do machine embroidery I really believe you CAN earn some extra income.

You could use your hobby to start building a business and get yourself on your feet more and more. Starting off slowly makes a lot of sense to me…Perhaps start with projects that have fewer stitches & that you enjoy doing. (Perhaps bookmarks, checkbook covers for us oldies who still use them, glass holders, hand towels, pillow cases etc…) I’d really LOVE to hear from any of you readers who HAVE marketed their items & how you built your business. Is it kind of easy or really hard?…..It’d be great to hear from you who have experience and answers. I just feel there are some out there who really would appreciate hearing how it’s done.

As a former ‘outsider to machine embroidery’ I know that I just LOVED the beauty, uniqueness and appeal of it. Not a lot of people know how to do it, OR have the ‘stuff’ ( and you know how much stuff it can take) to make personalized embroidered items.

I have to laugh…I went into the local group’s ME monthly get together last month before my summer grad classes at the Sewing Room for a demonstration, and the ladies ‘knew me” or felt they did – after having read my blog…

One lady was so cute…she said…”Oh I feel like I know you now……...I had to go ‘reheat my coffee once ’ ……but I loved reading it! “ That TOTALLY cracked me up!!! ….She had to go reheat her coffee, huh???? It took THAT long to read it.???!!! (I think one could bake a loaf of bread during this one!!!). Then the other ladies all piped in and said..Oh yah..you have to get yourself all comfortable and then sit back and just read it.. It’s just like ‘talking to you.”

Thank you ladies, you were so kind & I don’t believe a one of you called me Chatty either!!!!

Thanks to all of you who take time away from your busy days to let me ‘chat with you.”

By the way…I really have enjoyed reading the comments of the various people who have shared their embroidery lives which also includes cats, family etc etc etc….It sure seems like we are a ‘homey and not glued to a rigid format” group…. I know the other bloggers who know what they are doing are REALLY contributing helpful ideas.

CherriesSOOOO here I am…an adult now as old as some of the ‘cruise ladies’ ( not the college oldies!!!) but just as nervous and uptight as they were trying to ‘learn’ new things.
I TRY SOOOOO hard…but it is not coming easily for me. I have spent SOOOOOO little time actually machine embroidering & SOOOOOO much money on things to ‘help me’!!! I have been shopping!!!…OH my goodness….I have spent like I was never going to be able to shop again. I think it must be an anxiety soother or something…but once I get this all organized and set up…I should really be set to have enough supplies on hand to do just about anything I want…& it WILL be so much fun!!! I LOVE the designs!!! I really can’t wait to get more instruction on doing the various types of embroidery out there!!!!!!

SO now, after all those years ago, I must turn right around to myself and say those very same words I had said to my kids in the classroom…..I’m talented and gifted….we are ALL talented and gifted…it may take some extra tries and I’ll have to work at it in more than one way …but I WILL learn to ME, I will compute and I will watercolor. I’ve decided that I am going to enjoy being a ‘kid’ again & enjoy my art like a kindergartender would. I TOTALLY LOVE bright colors…and it is just magic when color lightens up a piece of fabric or the page.

Here I am retired and one would think I could just lollygag around doing things I was good at & enjoyed or at at least at a slower pace….noooooooope, not me…I guess I am not ready to go out to pasture quite yet!


Chatty Cathy in Hillsboro just getting ready to help can 20 more quarts of fresh Oregon cherries. Yum! 

Comments (54) -

jalcumbrack 7/25/2008 4:22:55 PM

Great blog Cathy,

I loved the paintings,are they yours? They certainly are beautiful and I will take 4 quarts of the cherries please! I understand about being retired,Ha ha! I work harder now than I did when I worked! Sometimes I wonder ,how I had time to work! Once you get the hang of retirement, it's not too bad. The first year I didn't work,(actually have a paid job,I always work doing something) I thought I was going to go bonkers! It was like a part of me just dissapeared,then I had all this time,and I could do any thing I wanted! Wow,I had never had that before! That is when I really started to surround myself with doing only the things I enjoy,every day. Once I got into the swing of Not having some place to go to evey day,it was pretty cool.For the first time in my life I could do the things I wanted to do,not the things I had to do.

You are right when you say this is not an inexpensive hobby/addiction, but I so have always enjoyed it so much so I don't look at it that way.I look at it as an investment in my sanity,LOL.

Good insight to who really are,and good insight to what other's just starting may be feeling. It is so easy to over load ourselves,and not realize it until we implode.

Oh and just so you know,you are not crazy,this is just what happens when you retire.

Keep up the good work, and hang tough,a little light will just go on in your head one of these days and it will all come together.I just want to know one thing?..............How do you get out of cooking? Because I am so over that one!

I too will take some of the fresh Oregon cherries!  I am not proud, will take just one....LOL

If anyone is interested in starting their own business, I do have am Excel Spreadsheet that gives you some idea of what to charge.  Please look for it in the Forum, "Today's Top Tips" and the thread is "How Much to Charge...."  

travelbug1237 7/25/2008 7:49:51 PM

jalcumbrack- Yes those are my own water color paintings. ( The circles are something I did for me to help me know 'what I had' as far as colors & what they could do.

  I made my own color chart and divided them into wet on dry and wet on wet to see the different effects. The shoe I drew in 1 inch segments, & the man I drew upside down before I knew what he was going to be.

In MEing I am excited to know IN ADVANCE what it will look like  (if all goes well.) lol  ( The purpose of the updside down and covered drawings are to try and get your right brain engaged & override the left which is usually what happens to us as we get older.) ( Right side is more creative...left more analytical.) ( & they can overlap which I personally think is good.)

THANKS for the compliments!!! Smile How nice of you to say!

  Oh so you want 4 quarts of cherries....& let see Pat wants 1....OK...SmileSmileSmile

   Yes I so agree ...getting use to retirement IS different....especially when I had SO much responsibility before for the little ones.  I took teaching VERY very seriously and I didn't want ONE child to be 'below grade level in anything" because I knew they had so many years ahead of them....their self esteem could be so affected not to mention what could happen to them academically.

   I'm waiting for that 'light' to go on....but I really DO think the creative side will be unleashed once I get the basics down -  & then it  will be totally FUN!!!


While shipping cherries out, I'll take some, too! LOL

I wish I had the problem of trying to get used to retirement. That time seems to get farther away instead of closer!

I'm so glad to hear that you had a good time with water colors. No one's ever to old to learn new things! Many of us have proven that.... I'm about to finish my Bachelor's degree & I'm over 50.... we have someone that blogs that's in her 80's & another that's 91!

I firmly believe that if you keep your mind active, you'll ward off the dementia & alzheimer's.  Anyway that's MY goal!

Looking forward to hearing about more of your ME adventures.

travelbug1237 7/25/2008 11:36:16 PM


( SURE LOVE your picture...I don't remember the word it's called but I know it starts with an 'A".... (That's a start!!! Smile

  and all other 'cherry lovers'

  I think the smart thing to do is to INVITE you all to beach ( N Oregon)

next July and we can have an old fashioned 'get together' canning,(We get the best cherries near Mt. Hood) MEing and by then even quilting & of course

chatting and laughing!!!

   Bring a tent or a travel trailer and we'll have a GREAT time.  (Husbands can come too....There is SO much to do and many beautiful places to see.)

(I do have a FEW extra beds so 1st come 1st serve ....just let me know....but bring your jars and machines!!!)

OH..& don't forget we can get sand dollars too! ( I have the NEATEST project for that!) SmileSmile You'll have to come HERE for me to share that though!!! SmileSmileSmile

   WAY back in the beginning I offered to share my beach home with anybody willing to teach me to ME. I didn't have one taker!!!!....that and lace!!????

                           ( It's a deal, I'm telling you. )

It's nearly impossible to get a place in Seaside in the summer especially...It's that popular.) One agency talked to me about renting my place out and they would charge a person $170 per night PLUS a cleaning fee.

Seaside has VERY nice fireworks on the 4th! too ( not sure if the cherries would be quite ready... just depends on the weather!)

   I know the price of gas is out of site & plane tickets are way up too, and my beach home is small, modest, clean & hopefully very welcoming. I think you'd love it and I SURE would love your help learning!!!

   So do I have ANY body interested yet ????

   By next July the art studio by the casino will be done too so we can be there OR the beach....Let me know!!!

  I AM SERIOUS...!!!!



P.S. Yes, I think it is FABULOUS that there are ME'ers in their 80's and 90's!!!!

(A prof I taught with at a university in Hawaii STARTED her bachelor's degree at age 65 when her husband retired!!! ) She not only got her bachelors degree; she went on to get her masters AND her PhD!!!!! I don't know how old she was....but she was just getting started professionally in her 70's & I didn't meet her until she had her PhD, wrote an ESL grammar book that was VERY helpful and had already been teaching!!! She was something else!!! SmileSmileSmile

 P.S.2   I DO have 2 other blogs completed and for sure 1 is an actual project for beginners ...can't remember the 2nd one now except that it had a lot of pictures....I tell you....the brain is just not the same as it use to be!!!! Smile - That coupled with my trip to the beach yesterday that got foiled when my cute little summer car ( I got out of storage) lost ALL power and I ended up  'having a visit'  with a nice "motorcycle officer" who made sure no one ran into me, and then I had a long conversation in Spanish with the tow truck driver back to the nearest dealer....Thank goodness for Triple A plus, a cell phone that still worked before I got into the coast range and a girlfriend willing to come and get me. at the dealership.(My husband is in Alaska on a charter fishing trip) so I was 'on my own."  The latest estimate is $1,700...Sigh....and I won't be getting my car back soon either...OH...& our other car... is not working either...Tip....DON'T use alternative fuels REGARDLES of what the gas station tells you if you are out of gas and they don't have 'regular or super' to sell you -

It messes up the fuel system deluxely!  

What a month!!!!???? (When it rains it pours!!!)...well it IS Oregon!!! They don't call us 'web feet' for nothing....even in 90 Degree weather! Smile

Well HH to you too TravelBug1237,

I sure have missed you. I feel like we've just had a very nice visit. This seems to have been a very busy summer for many of us ME'ers. I too have been canning anything that come out of the ground (except the grass). We used to freeze things down here, but since so many hurricanes lately we loose power and there goes all our hard work, so canning is something I just learned to do last year and I love it. I just love looking at all my work, sorta like when a design comes out so pretty, I just gotta look at it over and over again and then, off it goes to a loving receipient. I have been monograming hand towels lately, I can look at that every time I go to the bathroom.(I finally did some for myself).Thanks for the great blog, until next time...


travelbug1237 7/25/2008 11:37:38 PM

Oh rnh....

 WHAT is your degree doing to be in ???? That is just AWESOME!!!!!

O.K. Book me now! I'm serious too! I was feeling a bit envious of the Florida Central Group. I just will have to sign up with the the new Oregon group. Just think of the anticipation we can build from now until then! I went to California last year for the first time, we wanted to go to Oregan, but ran out of time. I know it's west, so now it's time for me to learn the rest!!! Let's get busy with some details! Until later...


travelbug1237 7/26/2008 12:08:22 AM


   THANKS SO MUCH for saying you missed me!!! and SO glad you feel it was like we just had a very nice visit. What a  really nice thing to say!!! Smile

I just cracked up with 'canning anything that came out of the ground...'except grass!" That was so unexpected and SOOOOO funny!!!

   So please refresh my memory...WHERE are you? Are you in Louisianna??? Greg has been doing a gazillion things and I think the map has been put on the back burner.

  I DID buy a small US map and a wall one....just in case Greg can't get a map up on the site. I thought I could at least go back through my blogs and go one by one when people contributed where they were wanting the 'pins' to go. Give me another month and I should be able to do that...then I will take a photo and send it in on a blog....It won't be the fancy CNN map but it will be a start! Smile & I really want to acknowledge each person who took the time to

answer my question....I really am not ignoring you all!!!

   Back to canning....Well I am a beginner too....It's my husband who won 4-H awards as a kid canning. ( He had 2 older sisters and a mom. One sister for sure was involved in 4-H canning because there is an old photo of those two canning at the fair. ...So along with his cows he got to can!)

  He makes SUCH a good wife! Smile))) The fire dept has those guys cooking and cleaning with chores every shift.) E started a garden there too and more of the guys are getting involved. When he gets back from Alaska we may get to can the last of the cherries this season (with his Capt and wife for the 1st time.)

     WHAT are your favorite things to can????

Cherries are easy and so will be the grape juice. Pears & peaches to me aren't easy....REAL messy and sticky... but oh they taste so much better than store bought..so it's worth it. I just put down towels right on the floor and every inch of the counters and then clean up is a breeze....

    PLEASE -  'show case' your hand towels!!!! We'd love to see them!!!

I just went to my new ME friend Lynn's house and she did a beautiful design with name on her Super Duper Brother Innovis machine.

The newest  Brother machine will be out in a month or 2.   Good grief....the carrots these companies can dangle....more bells and whistles and bigger stitching areas etc ..I can see where one can start wanting more than they already have...but I need to get my basics down!!! & NOT overspend!!!!! Famous last words!!!


That's great you did do something FOR YOURSELF. I can't believe how many people in 'ME group' tell me that they gave given EVERYTHING away that they have done.     It's good you are being good to yourself too!!!

     You are SO welcome and the next 2 blogs is raring to go. Smile

travelbug1237 7/26/2008 12:11:42 AM

OK....I think we should AIM for the 4th of JULY week....

Let's see what others think....!!!

I am excited!!!!  Do you need a bed....1st come..1st serve.... SmileSmile


My degree is in Radiology. I have only 3 weeks until I'm finished! It's taken 2.5 yrs of on-line courses, but I'm almost at the finish line! YAHOO!!!!!!!!

It's been 30 yrs since I graduated with my Associates in Radiology.

I haven't had time for sewing since I started school, so I'm REALLY anxious to be finished.  I have sooooo many ideas it's hard to know where to start!

For your map . . . put my pin in Columbia, Illinois.....just southeast of St. Louis, Missouri


(my avatar is an x-ray of an amarillas)

serenemachine2 7/26/2008 12:04:17 PM

Cathy, I amthrilled with your blog!!!  And this one especially.  I mentor many adult women who have drug and alcohol problems.  One has just finsihed her PhD in History and now an Asst Professor at UC Santa Barbara.  Another is in her last year at CalPoly SLO for a degree in horticulture!  She has helped me immensely with my flower beds and a few trees!  Another was on welfare with two boys and just finished her Bachelors and now enrolled in a Masters program.  They are in their late 30's, early 40's.  I have a few more that are in school working on their general ed but with BIG dreams.  It is so fulfilling and of great spiritual value.  I love them dearly!  

I have been to seaside and stayed at the RV park there!!  A beautiful community in the summer!  I have freinds in Clatskanie.  Being a warm weather lover, I am never far from the sun in the winter!.

My hus and I retired in 2000 and toured the country in our 40ft shopping cart for 5 years.  He got bored!!!  Men!!!  So we are back in SoCal and he has been working for 4 years again.  I have been trying (operative word "trying" to get into ME'ing.  Have spent $$$$$$$$ gettin supplies.  I have a freind that says I just love the shopping!!  Might be true.  I have made a few things, but with mentoring 11 women, another home to take care of, I don't seem to have lots of what you would call "free" time.  And I read all these "&*?@ blogs!!!  I COuld spend all day on this computer learning and never get to doing anything!!

Thanks for your "personal" experience and not to worry, you mind is working fine for me!!!

serenemachine2 7/26/2008 12:06:24 PM

Oh, by the way my husband spent 8 yras in the Antarctic in the Navy (31 all toll)  There is a wonderful cruise that goes there ever year during their summer.  A friend of ours is the "experience" Captain on the ship.  If you want more info, let me know!

Cathy, your blogs are so much fun to read!  Thank you for sharing your personal story.  It's amazing how sometimes people who appear to have never had any "rain" fall into their lives have had devastating life altering situations.  You could write a book, I'll bet.

I'm a beginner too - bought my machine in March of 08.  So it's fun to have a blogger who is also new.  

travelbug1237 7/26/2008 8:57:30 PM

Thanks to all of you who said such nice things !! Smile I have a million more comments and will try to make sure I don't leave anyone out. SmileSmile

sewwhat2... You made my day??? Ya know why???? You used 'HH" for 'hello hello' and so now I think it's now an 'official short cut in e-mail lingo...don't cha think???Yeah!!! That  is REALLY exciting....now if I can just get someone to do lace! Smile

It's not hard folks!!! I'm chuckling....I know, not everyone is into lace...but if anyone has a fear of it I am just here to tell you that you can do it.

  So AL,you are serious about coming to Oregon next summerr??? That's GREAT!!!  Consider yourself reserved!!!

 I just heard from one of my 'table mates' ( Linda ) that C Florida's  - turned out REALLY great and that there were MANY many beautiful items people brought to share and give ideas!!! Plus Ann got surprised with a 'cow'  birthday cake!!! How neat was that. The person who got that all organized deserves a lot of hugs!!!!

   I am not locked into the 4th of July date....(that might interfer with other people's family get togethers...(???) So... we have a year to plan an exact date and let's see which part of July it best for people...No matter what ....even if it's just the 2 of us....we'll have a great time....but I am thinking there might be a few more than just the 2 of us!!! SmileSmile Big or small it will be just great!!!

rnh ( Rosie) ...WOW just 3 weeks to go!!!! That is SOOOOOO fantastic!!!!....Ms. Radiologist!!!!   ( again ) Do you know where you are going to work?....Are you staying put or willing to move....to Oregon that is!!??? SmileSmile  I am recruiting ME'ers to this neck of the woods!!!

Boy I can totally relate to 'not sewing when you're in school." You'll make up for it  though, and just think instead of paying tuition money out ....you'll be getting paid  $ in!!! Think of all the designs and thread in store for you.Smile

Where to start.???..Well maybe learn from my mistake. I got so SIDE-TRACKED shopping I ended up not doing much Meing unless I was actually getting a 'lesson' but that was fun too. Smile

I hope you got to read the comments from serenemachine2...

(... ladies going to school later in life..) VERY very inspiring and I can hardly wait for her to tell me more about her 'mentoring." with those ladies.

Oh 'avatar' ....that's it....I had never ever heard of that word until a month or so ago in one of the blogs....So HOW did you actually DO an x-ray on it? Did you do it  yourself??? w/ the blessing of the clinic???? SmileSmile Details please!!!!

Serenemachine2....Thanks so very much for your wonderful comments.!!! I have just so much I want to say to you.....( & ask...) Please do tell me more about your 'mentoring'...how you got into it. etc etc. Are you an LCSW by chance and/ or do it through your church etc?

  As far as spending $$$$$$....How about we trade receipts!!!!

I can't BELIEVE how much I have spent!!!!!???!!! Yikes......but I DO think it is important to let beginners (like myself)  know you DON'T HAVE to spend a ton... I  just should have shown some restraint and turned off the computer and turned ON my machine instead!!! SmileSmile...but then there are the local stores!!! SmileSmile

  OK...on to ANTARCTICA....are you kidding me!!!!??? - Do I want to know more????....YES YES a thousand times yes !!!!??? & PLEASE send the 'experience captain' my e-mail address....( might he enjoy my blogs while stuck in an iceberg???

I think I am going to need to see if they need an

entertainment director' to get a  discounted fair....Man the prices for Antarctica cruises costs as much as a car....oh speaking of cars....I didn't get mine back yet...it's still in the repair shop!

 I REALLY really really...would LOVE to go there!!! It's one of my last big dreams!!!

SO your husband was there for 8 years????? Holy cow!!!! The stories he could tell...! You mentioned he was in the Navy...Was he by chance in the Orient during the Viet Nam war? Was he ever on the USS Kittyhawk???

Which RV park in Seaside....Thousand Trails???? Just curious!! Smile

Dawnlup....Thanks so much!!!! Fun to read....thanks!!!! I'm so glad you think so!

Yep, I did share my personal story & yes I 'could write a book...& just about did. Just ask  Greg...He got 9 pages of my 'personal history' & he had to edit it  profusely in order to not overload everyone's circuits!! SmileSmile Not sure what it did to his!!!

( He DID leave out some pretty 'juicy' parts though, like the West Point grad vs the accidental long distant Hell's Angel in my life, my early childhood, (those who have influenced me greatly, teaching swimming in college to 'older students' & one lady especially that I think serenemachine2 you'd really LOVE to hear about, my favorite PhD drill sergeant in college (not the older PhD lady)...( Oh that reminds me...I completely left out my Gomer Pyle days!!)....THAT is a MOVIE in itself....too bad I didn't send a transcript to Private Benjamine's writers....I have LOTS and LOTS of true stories I could share.....Yep...I could write a book!!! SmileSmile

I think I end up writing  mini novels here on AnntheGran but ONE of these days I will be a real true blue 'doing it correctly' ME blogger-  shorter to the point, logical....no side-tracking w/ walks down memory lane,...pictures edited in advance that DOES relate to MEing etc etc) ...but in the mean time....Greg does his magic each and every time....& then I get credit for the blog....to thanks but thanks to Greg too!!! He does have a talent ( & a real gift to highlight and cut to the chase yet still leave enough 'flavor' so to speak...so my 'voice' is still heard.

Thanks Greg and thanks to you who support me. It's really appreciated.Smile

You continue to crack me up, Cathy! I'd have loved to publish all nine pages, but then, instead of just getting up and going for coffee during your posts, people would need whole nights sleep in between parts to do your stories proper justice!

You're doing a great job, Cathy, and you can consider me just one of many who is rooting for you to master all your creative pursuits and even find a little time for a side-trip to Antarctica.

travelbug1237 7/26/2008 9:28:47 PM


serenemachine2 7/26/2008 9:31:19 PM

Glad you enjoyed my response Cathy.  You just got me going!!!  My husband was in Nam, but on the USS Independence.  Air Traffic Controller.  And yes, he has some stories!!  (I know them by heart and now have them numbered!!! lol) I will forward your info to my friend, it will show up as p.taylor.  He is a retired Coast Guard Captain and did tours in the Antartic on ice breakers. (okay, I sent it!)

As for the mentoring, there are lots of rehab/recovery homes, homes for battered women, and the local college itself that really need your experience, strength and hope!  Try any of them.  What helped me was a 12 Step program where I belonged!! Been at it 34 years now! Thanks to God!!  

Look forward to hearing more from you, but I do need to embroider something!!!  lol


You crack me up!

I'm staying where I am for now. I'm the manager of an outpatient imaging center in south st. louis county. Going back to get my bachelors was partly for myself & partly for job security. But moving is never out of the question! Who knows! I've learned to always leave my options open . . .  don't burn bridges & don't close doors!

No, I didn't x-ray the amarillas myself. But I have x-rayed other flowers. Seashells make gorgeous x-rays, too. When I  want to x-ray a flower, I put contrast (an iodine based contrast used to show up your kidneys on an x-ray) in the water that the flower is in. After a couple of days, the flower has absorbed water & contrast. You can then x-ray it because the contrast is in the veining, petals & leaves of the flower. It's really cool!

Boy, do I know what you're talking about when you say you got sidetracked buying everything! I've caught myself doing the same thing. Now my craft area is stacked with projects that have never been started & the stacks are overwhelming. That just isn't like me, but as I said, everything was put on hold while I was in school. I'll just need to whittle away at the stacks before buying more to do! But it's sooooooo tempting with all the ideas coming from the instructional blogs.......greeting cards, endless hooping & jumble alphabets. Everything's just so tempting!!!!



I'm several days behine reading your blog but as usual it is very entertaining.  I always enjoy reading it and you give me great joy to have you mention me.  You better reserve one of those beds for me because I am certainly coming out next year.  It's been two years since I've been out west and I really miss it.  I'm glad to see you mention starting a business and I'll have to check out Pat's blog on what to charge because I have gotten so many requests for items I can't keep up with them.  Thanks for all the encouragement you give everyone and keep up the good work.  By the way I love the painting with the fish!  You're doing great.

serenemachine2 7/26/2008 10:34:29 PM

My friend  Taylor, read your blog and wants to know how to contact you.  HE will be on the cruises again this year, the ship is MV Discovery and you can google it.  There are ways to make it cheaper, like flying to Brazil and getting on there!  Another friend of ours did that last year and got the whole cruise for $2500.!!  

travelbug1237 7/26/2008 11:54:46 PM

HH again.... What a GREAT group of  'responders' today!!! I'm on the West Coast here and it is still daylight - I will get to dinner and go to bed and will check in again tomorrow but I just HAVE to say hello to my friend Linda ( LMJ5505) who befriended me right off the bat in Orlando....We were side by side the entire time!!! SOOO fun!!!!    Linda... That is SOOOOOOO great you are getting so many requests!!! Yes..and I hope down the road you might share 'your story' with others.....She's a newbie  too and is just getting her business started....but she can fill in all the rest!!!

SOOOOOO good to hear from you!!!...and WOW...you are coming next summer too!!!!

That is 2 confirmed besides myself!!! We are going to have such a great time...

   It's not usually humid here so you people from the East, South and Midwest might really find Oregon in the summer very refreshing!!!!..

Rosie...How interesting!!! The seashell explanation is REALLY fascinating!!!


OH ,,,,and you know what else came to my mind...That saying you said...would be fantastic ME'd on a wall hanging!!! I hadn't heard the other part before!!! That is REALLY REALLY good advice!!!

Serenemachine2.....I love the picture of you and your husband!

You are a BEAUTY!!!... and boy does SERENE fit you perfectly!!!! What a WONDERFUL wonderful thing to share with the group. 34 years is an amazing amount of time.....totally totally awesome and such an inspiration to others that you have helped during that time too!!!


   THANKS SOOOOO much for sending your friend Taylor my info to let me know more about Antarctica!!! I can hardly wait..... $2,500 is A LOT more reasonable that the $24,000 ones I have been getting in the mail....I just burn them.....like I said...it's a car to me and I DO need one of those right now!!! PLUS I am just fixing up the one I have had for 15 years.

It's a little red Miata that I have babied all these years....

I still love it....just sad it's in the shop.....and will be more sad when the final bill comes....Oh well at least I HAVE a car...not everyone is as fortunate & I know that.

  I don't believe I was on the USS Independence.....ever. What was your home port etc?

(I was on a USO tour  the fall of 1969 for 6 weeks and had such a great great time. We performed in Subic Bay and I am trying to recall some of the other ports.) We did mostly Air Force and Army  bases ( and some hospitals) but

I DO remember sitting in a fighter pilot's plane on the deck of the USS Kittyhawk...(.Don't think I'd fit in it anymore though!  bummers!!!Smile

   Are you and your hubby thinking about coming to Oregon next summer?

Is it a possibility??? There is more than 1 RV site now in Seaside....but they are getting really expensive there so we have a place to park an RV if you'd like rather than spend the extra on a space.

Just let us know.....SmileSmile

 ( Oh WorldMark/TrendWest has a HUGE resort right on the ocean for any of you that have time shares with them.)

   I think I'd be just about willing to ride the smoke stack to see Antarctica...so we'll see what dates etc are possible...OH how fun that would be!!!!

I taught in N Chile and lots of  ships left from Southern Chile for Antarctica....I had planned to go there the next year  ( & school) ...BOY....they'd be hitting pay dirt if they were open now with the price of metals these days. One just never knows.

THANKS again....Everyone have a REALLY nice night's sleep!!!


CinO ( Cathy in Oregon )

Cathy, I'm new to this forum and to "blogging"!  I don't know if this is the right way to do this but I'm giving this a try!  I loved your "Adventures of Crash Course Cathy", and can identify with a lot of it.

I'm fairly new to ME, but have started a small home-based embroidery business.  I'm learning as I go and it's a blast.  I'll enjoying learning with all of you!

I retired from my day job last fall, and the problem I'm having is trying to decide which project to work on next - I want to do it ALL right now!  I "forget" that I have tomorrow and the next day and the next, etc!  I have never been busier and I don't know how I ever got anything done when I worked full-time away from home!

As for coming to your place next summer for canning, ME, and whatever - I'll take you up on that!  You said something about lace, well I've done some and have learned a few things!  I have a travel trailer (pop-up) and also do just fine in a tent, so I'd love to come and camp and sew with you and others.

I live in Redmond, WA so I'm not too far away.  I used to live in Hillsboro - New Hampshire though, not Oregon.  I moved here about 28 years ago so feel this is home.

I have 2 kids (boy, girl) and a granddaughter who loves to "sew" and "ME" even though she has just turned 4.  She sits beside me and copies everything I do on her imaginary machine!  She even get the terminology right - "Yep, the bobbin's OK", "Press Start" , etc!  So, I hope I can pass on the tradition and knowledge, and maybe even a prosperous embroidery business someday!

I'll keep enjoying you blog, and wait to hear about plans for next summer!!

Pat (SunRai)

travelbug1237 7/27/2008 1:57:22 PM

HH Pat, (Sunrai)

  SO good to hear from you!!!!!.... and CONGRATS on your 1st blogging response!!!! Welcome to AnntheGran!!! We're so glad you're here!!!

  You are so welcome to write comments on any of the blogger's sites. We all appreciate the feedback. Smile

Thanks...I'm glad you enjoyed reading my 'Adventures" Did you read all  of them?.??????!!!!!..... Did you need an oxygen tank ??? lol   If you actually read all 5 in one sitting you deserve a special ME'd cushion!

  Oh...and for sure...you are doing it 'right.'

Each of us bloggers has a different style and those that make comments vary greatly too.....short to long, funny, thoughtful, you name it....if it's G rated it's probably been in AtG in one place or another.Smile

We ( oops, ....I ) get off the subject of machine embroidery more often than not....but we are just like a 'chatting family at a get together'...lots of talking and sharing. (so far no public arguing though  & not  too many  embarrassing  things brought up!!!SmileSmile)

  There are some though that DO stick to the point and purpose and those sites are going to be very helpful to you as a beginner....so you can learn a lot from them that ARE experienced and know what they are doing.

   (I'm still getting my feet wet) so to speak and when things get stressful I

do something to de-stress usually shopping or eating....not saying it is the best thing to do, just the opposite...so as a beginner I'm just letting you know one of the pitfalls that can happen, but it sounds like you are having too much fun to get stressed...so we can learn from you!!! So DO SHARE!!!! Smile

HOW EXCITING you are planning on coming to Oregon next summer!!!!

That is just SOOOOOO great!!! There are 4 confirmed so far....

(just hope the gas prices don't smitherine our plans completely)

 I think this is just great and am thrilled that we will actually have an ME marathon  slumber party!!!  Your  trailer  will be perfect!!! We have a spot reserved just for you! ( We have some land in an additional spot 5 minutes from the beach house & it will be a great spot for your pop-up  - sounds perfect...SO much fun!!! There is a little home on that site that MIGHT be ready by next July, but LOTS of space there &  we have just parked our motor home there too. (E recently bought our neighbors OLD motor home here in town.)  He wanted to sell it  because of the price of gas ( only 6 miles to the gallon) so it's now in Seaside parked for the rest of it's life. Smile

  We'll solidify a date fairly soon...but SOMEWHERE in July is my best guess right now. We have '3 confirmed yes' so far...and I have met 2 of them in Florida and they are such NICE nice ladies!!!  This will be so much fun!  I can just see us  ...talking for hours on end...with machines buzzing!!! ( We MIGHT get some canning in....:???)Smile I think we should have a  'practical activity' too....We can draw names out of a hat of each of us that are there....then we can 'decorate' a pair of pajama bottoms and give it to our 'secret buddy'...Won't that be fun!!! ME"d to the gazoo & we'll have a momento to remember the

'09 ME fest! For me...since I don't sew yet...I will ME on a piece of fabric (lots of designs )THEN cut out the pattern around it so I don't have to worry about 'centering and all of the machine embroidery designs. Oh we can get SOOOO creative!!! It would be a WONDERFUL opportunity for us beginners to see what can be done...  A few of the  'seasoned' ME'ers  could go through a bunch of 'skills' we should be learning.  Oh it will be fun!!!!...no matter what the size of the group - be it small or big.

 Cooking will take on a life of it's own....HUSBANDS????

Redmond, WA is home of Microsoft, correct?

Did you work in the computer field??? Just curious if your move from N.H. was because of work, military or love??!!! If it's not too personal I'd love to hear. I LOVE to learn about people (and their lives.)

People are just SO fascinating and we can learn so much from each other.

OH...I think that is SOOOOO sweet that your granddaughter 'sews'.

Ya know....Have you ever let her use the "SideWinder" for making bobbins? She'd be a real helper there too and it is fun. Ann sells that in her store.

I LOVE mine and I wind away when my machine is doing it's thing...

  Well, thanks again for taking the time to read my blogs and congrats on your 1st entry....You did great!!!! ...See you soon...well  in a year, and thanks again for  writing too!!!


What a great post!


serenemachine2 7/28/2008 2:03:35 AM

Okay, Cathy!!!  We stayed at the Seaside Resort on 12th Street.  It is an ROD park.  Resorts of Distinction.  My husband is back working (boring) so no go for him.  We still have our 40ft shopping cart in the back yard where we have an rv pad with full hookups.  But I do have Worldmark Time Share!!  Seaside might be a good thing for me next summer!!!

ritasdigest 7/28/2008 3:33:31 PM

I happened to be at a higher end dept store recently and began talking to one of the sales people in the linen dept. After talking a while he discovered what I do (like the rest of us on this site) and asked if I would be interested in doing monograming on towels for the store. It wouldn't be a bad idea to contact your local bed, bath & beyond (or other nice dept stores in your area)and give your # to the manager for embroidery services. Lots of times stores that have bridal registries off this service, but the turn around for large companies that offer this service is much slower (especially when you calculate shipping into the time frame). Just a thought for those of you looking to start something small. The store I worked with has at least 6 other stores in the city, and it could be a nice way to get started and help cover costs for new product.

Good luck.

Oh, my!  I can't begin to comment on all the great posts here!

I understand about going back to school at a later date!  I finally got my B.S. when I was 47, by working full time and going to school on weekends.  My kids were in high school by then, so I had it a bit easier than many do.  But I was a single mom, and the pressure was immense.  It was the best thing I ever did for myself!

Thanks for the suggestion of contacting department stores as a business opportunity.  What a great idea!

We get a lot of business from school clubs and hobby groups.  If you know any teachers, that is a great resource for business.  For a small business, word of mouth works great, and the advertising is free!

Cathy asked about my work, etc.  Yes, Redmond is home for Microsoft, but I moved here before that was so!  My first husband and I moved to the Pacific NW because it was one part of the US that we hadn't lived in!  He had been in the Air Force and later an airline pilot and we had moved a LOT!  When we landed here and my kids started school, I said that was it - I wasn't moving again!!  Later he decided he liked Texas (and a Texas woman!) better and left to live there.  But I stayed here.

A few years ago I remarried and we decided to live in my home.  So, my granddaughter is growing up with the same home her mother grew up in!  They've lived with us until last summer when they got their own place not too far from here.

After my divorce I went to work for Boeing (the other famous, former Seattle business!) as a Technical Illustrator.  I loved my work and just retired last Fall.

Now I have time to get back in touch with my creativity!  Although I was an illustrator, it was technical - I drew installation drawings for the electrical systems in the airplanes!  We used to do them in ink on mylar, and at least I had the kinesthetic experience of that.  Later we did our work on computers, and the more advanced they became, the less creative thought had to go into it.  It was VERY technical, which I also like, but I missed the creative part.  I've always said I have a foot in both worlds - the artistic, creative one and the analytical, technical one!  I have a split personalitiy!

I love ME because of both the technical and the beautiful parts of it.  I want to learn to digitize!  and I love playing with the colors.

I just realized that I have a problem when I come to Seaside next summer.  I can't bring my embroidery machine with me - it's a 15-needle commercial one and much too big to move.  But I can bring my regular sewing machine to play with.  And I can still share the information, ideas, enthusiasm, etc with everyone.  I think it will be a blast!  We each bring something unique to the table!

I don't know if my hubby will come with me - I hope so because he has to pull the trailer!  I'm sure he can find things to do there, maybe even "commiserate" with some of the other MEer's husbands!!

Meanwhile - until we meet next year, there are plenty of things to explore together on this forum!

I'm curious what design software others are using.  I have Embroidery Office and the Floriani Suite.  The company I got my machine from (SWF) has changed to Wings, and I've thought about changing also.  Any comments, suggestions?

Now I have some sewing to finish, and some ME to do, a dog to play with, a lawn to mow, and....!  It never ends, thank goodness!

Pat (SunRai)

jalcumbrack 7/29/2008 7:14:51 AM

Hi Pat(SunRai),

I like the sound of Wings! It implies that your embroidery machine takes "Wing" when you are doing a project. I would also like to have your machine!! I used to work on a 15 needle way back when,LOL, and I loved it! I don't know what others really use for software, I think that is just about as individual as the machines, and the folks who have them. I was using Janome software that we bought when we got the machine,but am looking at some others now,as mine is out dated. You will have to stick to what is applicable for your 15 needle,where most of us can use anything from Buzz to Stitches, to Masterworks. I am not sure what is out there for the commercial machines any more,it has been a while since I was looking at them, and for me, it is a dream to even think of owning one.I am currently researching Masterworks. I like something that is easy to use and I don't feel like I am reading through stereo instructions,for them to get to the point!LOL

Floriani Suite I can imagine is Impressive and I for one would like to see it in action!As well as your machine! Can I please come and play? I am currently trying to talk my hubby into to a multiple needle but he keeps saying no,so I will have to keep working away on mine .Looks like we are all going to meet up at Cathy's place,I do think it would be a lot of fun for sure,just so everyone knows, I plan on being the first one there,so I can get the spare room!

Take care and keep writing to Cathy,she is a wonderful person to get to know! I for one am glad to see so many new folks take part in the ATG site,there is a lot of information here for everyone to enjoy and take part in.You are right with the statement,we each bring something unique to the table!

My brother worked as a technical illustrator for Ford for years,and is now getting in touch with his creative side as well.He is doing flames and pinstriping on cars( PT Cruisers to be more specific) in his spare time,trying to get a business going for when he retires. He is very talented and I for one am glad to see he is doing that,I always loved his art work! I am letting out mine with my embroidery,in it's own way ,it is art . I would love to see some of your creations,I so enjoy seeing what other's are doing with this wonderful art. Maybe you can post a couple of photos for us to see in the Media section.

Take care and I hope we can all meet up at Cathy's place,it definatly would be a hoot! Good luck with your endevors!

Judy,another crazy Cathy fan and embroidery nut!

travelbug1237 7/29/2008 9:34:49 AM

Good morning everyone....Just got the note from AtG that they will be shutting things down for 24 hours tomorrow and I will make my 2nd attempt to get to the beach...fingers crossed...no more getting side-tracked with 'car issues' .

I'm happy to report that my car is 'all fixed' and that E is having a great time catching fish and will be home Saturday. (He was sorry to hear that the labor was over $1,000 on the car though.)  He's there and I'm here and well..sometimes you just have to bite the bullet ....but it so reminds me of my 'single days' and being at the mercy of a mechanic., handyman, etc etc . Oh well....Enough on that.

   THANKS Pat for answering "technical questions that Pat ( Sun Rai )

asked yesterday. Holy Cow....I sure had NO clue WHAT she was talking about although I have heard the word "Floriani". before...as in stabilizer..but I am not into "Suites, wings, Masterworks & ..  .was there 1 more??" Anyway....Pat who wrote the question and to Pat who answered...thanks to both of you!!! I am GLAD you have found each other.!!!!..It sounds like you 2 are on the same EXPERIENCED level and can help each other. I'll just 'listen' and try to pick up your  lingo and someday it will make sense. Smile

   You are more than welcome to use my blog space, but Pat Sun Rai...just in case you didn't know...I am a REAL beginner and I am just at the baby step level in MEing....and I don't know many answers yet...but as you have found out....there ARE readers you DO KNOW A LOT and it is sooooo great they are willing to help answer me in my 'beginner's blog corner."

  Thanks too SunRai for filling me in on all the details....I just loved reading about your AF husband/pilot ( met and dated a few myself) ....but then....boo/hiss!!!! .. and so sorry about the other lady......but it sounds like you have a wonderful life again.!!!!! YES I do know about Boeing....my Aunt worked in Renton and loved her job there.

    As far as bringing your 'big machine' to Oregon...I totally understand the logistics of not bringing that., but your other machine will come in handy for those ME'd PJ bottoms!! I just think it is so wonderful that some of us REALLY are going to get together in Oregon next year!!!! How fun will that be!!!

Yes, ALL husbands are invited...hope they all like to cook- we won't be SmileSmile!!!! SmileSmile

  E will keep them entertained and they can see and do so many things.

(Seaside is famous Lewis and Clark territory too.)

Depending on the time....they may get to go 'clamming' and that is always fun and maybe do some crabbing. E has a little boat etc....

  SERENE Machine......12th street!!! Yep...I know exactly where it is!!!

Let me know when you can come....time share wise etc...we are looking at the summer/fall for sure....I'd said July but if everyone who is planning to come can quickly just give me their input for the BEST time let me know.

I'm flexible....well we DO need to keep Antartica in mind!!! SmileSmileSmile ( Just curious about the 'summer' trips....that's their winters and well....I am adventurous but

I also get seasick....so I do try and time my trips if possible to avoid upchucking & being green around the gills.

Unicat...I mean Unicow (with the cute cat & thread) .WELCOME ...I don't think I have heard from you before!!! There's a bit of mystery here....would love to hear more about you!! You've definitely connected to the "chatty site' and

we love details here as you can tell. SmileSmile I'm glad you thought the post was great! ( I really really had intended to write about Redwork but it just never ever got there....) but it's in the pike and it's turned in and should be ready to post soon along with a 'photo' /blog. ( I think that one is of my 'shopping spree part 4 of 40!!!!) Honestly....it has been a shopping frenzy since last April but I am cooling my jets SOMEWHAT!!!! SmileSmile  Thanks for contributing and adding color to this page. Don't you just LOVE THREAD???? The colors are so beautiful....and then of course DESIGNS....I don't know how anyone shows restraint when it comes to those. I am just so IN AWE!!!!

Ritadigest....Thanks for sharing your experience in the high end store.

You made a really important point there that I hadn't thought of ....the turn around time being so much faster with yourself than the bigger commercial places. I am SURE that tip will help some of the readers who are trying to build their businesses. Thanks again for sharing that! Are you going to be doing that yourself, and if yes...do let us know how it goes. Smile

  Well it is now daylight....I got up early this morning and want to go back to bed now. I sure keep some WEIRD hours now that I am into machine embroidery.....but we have such varying time zones be it here in the states, the British Isles or Australia etc....so I am pretty sure someone - someplace is

'up' when we're on Ann's site.


ME'ers....I am TOTALLY totally excited to be hearing from you...& especially to know that we will be getting together to ME!!! I am just thrilled to think we have at least 2 coming that FOR SURE know what they are doing...

and that will help us 'newbies' out tremendously!!! I can hardly wait for the "hands on sessions" It will be so much fun!!!!

( I told E that we need to have the little 'fixer upper' ON 12th street functioning by next summer...We'll for sure have one bathroom and a shower working....not sure about the rest of the home...it's a long story but in a nutshell.... My little beach house was getting overrun with 'stuff'....little boat, crab nets etc etc...and so I called my realtor and asked her ( and said....DON'T LAUGH....which she did!!!!...she knows me pretty well now)  if she could find me a 'garage' and preferably with some land....any place between Seaside and Hillsboro...She did and the rest is history...

    SO we do have a garage now ...yeah... ( The beach house does not) and they are only 5 minutes a part by car/bike. So those of you who have campers, motor homes or tents....There is LOTS of space to park and we will make sure there is electricity for you too. Those who need beds...well we can get some 'blow up beds' too and we also have a brand new large tent...... The more the merrier....we may need to bring ear plugs for those of us who snore....but it should be a lot of fun. ( Oh and did I mention there is an 'outlet mall' in Seaside....yep...

Nike, Bali, etc etc...but we'll be TOO busy MEing to shop, right  ladies???!!!)

  If I don't get back to you until this weekend...please know that I am not ignoring you....I am just getting things in order at the beach.


CinO ( Cathy in Oregon )

jalcumbrack 7/29/2008 1:10:25 PM

Well,I'm not Pat,I am Judy but you are welcome anyway Cathy!! I am sure some others will be answering as well,we are all at different levels of experience and knowledge. Ya gotta love Cathy ,she continues to "crack me up" on a regular basis.Her blog is refreshing for those of us who have been around for a time,it helps us to remember how we felt at some point in our lives. We were all new to this at some point,it is a constant learning process,especially with the way technology is exploding now. Good luck to you Pat(SunRai) with your new business,Welcome to the ATG site,glad to have you and Good Luck Cathy on getting to the beach this week! Sift some sand for me!(I live 7 miles from the Gulf and haven't been to the beach since last year!) Have a great day everyone! Smile


travelbug1237 7/29/2008 2:02:00 PM

OH MY GOODNESS...  I am SOOOOOO sorry JUDY....Oh for goodness sakes...I need to go take another nap!!!!

   JUDY, JUDY, JUDY....there ( when I was learning to 'spell again & learn names after my wreck...) I would write the person's name over and over again until I could 'connect the two ' properly and/or learn to spell it.

   Oh my goodness I am SO sorry - & thanks for being nice about it. Smile

SO, MANY  thanks  to  "JUDY"  for helping PAT ( SunRai)

    ( I guess I will need to make sure you get a REAL bed instead of a blow up one in Oregon for just having messed up your identity. OOOPS!!!

(I really do try to make up for my mistakes! Smile

jalcumbrack 7/30/2008 11:01:37 AM


Don''t worry about it ,my goodness. Trust me I have been called a lot worse,LOL! Have fun at the beach, my friend!

Judy (and eeveryone els for that matter!) - about the commercial machines - they aren't that much more expensive than the home versions.  It's just that they aren't really protable.  But after looking at the cost of the home vs the commercial ones, I decided to take the leap and go commercial.  I'm glad I did, but there are some differences.  It uses a .dst format which is pretty standard and it's easy to find patterns.  And it's easier to do lots of color changes.  It also sews a bit faster.  In the end though, the embroidery comes out as good as the operator makes it with the design and technical decisions like stabilizer, density, etc.

For those of you with home versions, don't worry, you can do beautiful embriodery, and you can take yours with you!!  I guess there are trade-offs, and + & - to each.

I just wanted to make the point that I you are thinking of buying a machine, take a look at the commercial versions because they are in the same ballpark $$ wise!

As for knowing a lot - I am still learning and feel like a beginner.  But I do learn something new with every piece I embroider.  Like they say - "practice make perfet"!  I'm still practicing, and FAR from perfect!

I'm sure excited about getting together next summer.  And it sounds like our hubbies will find lots to do!  Mid July or later works for me.  I have a committment the 1st weekend of July - but if I that is the only available date - well I may be able to get out of it!!

I'll try to post some things about my storage and work space in the appropriate place.  It's fun to read about other's studios and work spaces!

I been part of this site for a long time and I was here when you did you first blog,  I enjoy all your posts very much. I am a new ME'er and have a Janome 10001 and I love it. I live south of you in Bend. I am originally from Hawaii and have lived here for 31 year as I came to college in 1970 and married someone I met in 1977. I have two daughters who are 24 and 21. It would be fun to get together wiht the others but mid July does not work for me because I will be going to Albuquerque to attend the American Sewing Guild conference. I just got back from the ASG conference in Chicago and last year I went to Sacramento for the confernce. The ASG conference is always in mid July.

If you ever come down to my part of the country it woud be fun to get together. We have a ASG chapter here in Bend and I am the CEO.

I look forward to what you have to say as it is all so helpful and I can relate to some of the things you say.

By the way, my username means "butterfly" in Hawaiian . I  am so glad that I figured out how to be able to write to your blog, I had to ask and I was told that I had to sign up before I could add a my 2 cents

On my 40th Birthday, I went to work and told my boss I was giving notice and going back to school.  I was unhappy as an Office Manager and didn’t want to spend the rest of my working life doing the same thing.  A few months later I went back to school.  I wanted to take computer class so I would have the education to back up what I already knew and to learn more.  The first semester I also took a class in PhotoShop and from there my path changed.  I started taking photography, since I had only used a point and shoot camera and had never seen the inside of a darkroom except on TV.  From there I added art classes to learn composition, balance and color.  That lead to graphic design courses.  I now have a certificate in Photography and Graphic Design.  I’m self-employed and work from home making Custom Photo Jewelry.  

I remember my Father telling my Brother and I, The road to success is always under construction.  For most of my life I thought of Success as financial, but now I see it as personal accomplishments and a feeling of satisfaction in my life.  I finally understand what he meant when he told us . . .  Life is like being in the middle of a lake.  The shore is your goal.  You have many shores to choose from and you can always change direction and head for another shore.  Without a goal, you will only swim in circles.

A lot of things have happened and changed since the day I quit my job, a lot of which was bad and I had no control over.  I am learning to accept the things I can’t change and change what I can.  I am glad I stopped swimming in circle on my 40th Birthday and headed to school.

I am new to ME, it took years for me to convince my Husband to let me get an Embroidery Machine, but a few months ago I was successful.  My goal now is to learn the basics and my next shore is to learn to digitize my own designs.  My passion is altering and embellishing ready-made clothes and ME is the ultimate way to achieve a personal, one of a kind item.

Cathy I look forward to following your journey in ME and wish you much success.

This week I made four batch of Plum Jam, last year was the first year I made jam.  Never know what you can do, until you try.  Your cherries look great.

Got to go, hubby just got back from the store with some English muffins to go with the jam.

serenemachine2 7/31/2008 1:09:30 PM

I love this blog!!!  (:  Trips to the Anartic are from December thru March, during their summer!!  As I am a kept wormen these days, anytime is great for me.  Mid July works.  Hubby will stay here and work so that I can remain living in the style to which I have become accustomed!!!  Being a single mom for 18 years totally prepared me for my life today!!  I am grateful!!

I have a Viking SE LE and use their software 4D Embroidery.  I haven''t really ventured to anything else and an really just learing 4D  I have a Designer1 and used 3D but 4D does digitizing and I want to learn that.  There is sooooo much to learn with ME.  It is not just the design, but placement, stablizer, types of threads, geeeze!!   I never canned anything in my life,but as I am OCD, ME has me now!!!  XXOO to you all.

Wow - rereading my last post is embarrassing!  I must have been really tired!  I know I was in pain due to the weather changing but I usually proofread better than that!  It's a good reminder for me to take care of myself first or nothing else seems to go right!  But I guess it goes to show that I'm not perfect (surprise!), and I'm sure others can still figure out what I was saying!  I just hope my mom doesn't read it - she was a stickler for proper grammer, spelling, etc.  And yes mom, I do know my grammer even if I do choose to ignore it sometimes!!!

BTW - is there a way to do spell check within this posting area?  I could always compose in Word, do a spell check, and then copy & paste here.  That seems like too much work!!

I'd love to hear what others have done to work around "disabilities".  Any tips for ergonamics, etc?  I'm so impressed with Cathy's story!  It goes to show what we can do when we put our minds, and hearts, into it.

What I love so much about this creativie outlet is that I can do the creative head work when I don't feel up to the physical work.  And I can work at my own pace, unlike when I was out in the workforce at a regular job with bosses, deadlines, and team members counting on me.  I still have deadlines, but I set them around my own timelines.

I love the analogy of swimming in a lake and choosing which shore to swim to!  I've landed on quite a few shores and have several more I want to visit!

I need to make some jam this summer.  I used to do a lot of canning when I had a family at home, but have gotten away from it lately.  All this talk of canning makes me want to dig out my canner and jars and get to work!

OK - back to work (fun)!  And if there are errors in this post - OH, WELL!

travelbug1237 8/1/2008 10:34:11 PM

HH Everyone...I'm back from the beach...didn't want to come back so soon, but E's arriving from Alaska early early tomorrow morning so I'm back in town to meet him. (The happy camper is returning with fish, clams and a lot of stories.)

(  did ask him how long his beard is....only an 8th of an inch because he did shave to go to church last Sunday.) lol

Sunrai Pat,

   Proof reading....Don't worry...you're amongst friends here.

(I haven't figured out a spell check in this section....so I just let 'r come out the best it can...You're right - cutting and pasting in word would probably work....but we're more into 'chatting' than publishing....SmileSmile Thank goodness...

well at least on my blog....We do a whole lot of chatting....as is...if we were just sitting across from each other 'talking away' and ooing and aweing and

and getting side tracked etc.

That's great you are enjoying your commercial machine.

I've heard pros and cons so far for both. Like you said....$$ wise they can be similar...and also what you said about transporting is a factor. It sounds like you haven't had any issues with it working smoothly for you.

  I have a new ME friend who has trouble with hers and it is too heavy for her and her husband to take in for repairs so she's not very happy with it, but I'm glad you are! Smile That's great. Having a repair technician coming into your home would be great but pretty spendy I'd think.

I don't want to discourage anyone from getting one but

it would be really a good thing to ask about 'servicing' it. etc etc.

That could be a really good 'forum' discussion.


OREGON ME retreat....sounds like most everyone is flexible so far. SmileSmile

Shall we say AUGUST rather than July since I've heard from 2 of you that there are some schedule conflicts in July. If any of you can NOT meet in August...please say so now....

    So....let's pick a  week in August you'd like. Just let me know and we can start really setting up the date and solidifying it. I don't care if we incorporate 2 weekends if you like with a full week in between ...which would make it more flexible for people. We'll just block off the time and people can come and go ( or stay all they want.)  Meals will be up to each person but there were be

campfires or a stove...etc.. LOTS of restaurants in the area. ( seafood, Chinese, Italian, KFC, Mc etc etc. + husbands....SmileSmile

I'm so glad you're excited Sunrai to come!!! It will be wonderful meeting you personally!!!

   ALOHA   pualele !!!!!!

WOW....How neat is that!!!???!!! I LOVE Hawaii!!!  Which island are you from???

Oh tell us more!!!!

Oh my goodness...,you had to pay to write me???....but honestly,...When you need ME supplies....ANN has some great deals and it will pay for itself in no time.  Also, since it sounds like you travel a lot for sewing....We're keeping our eyes peeled to see when and where ANN has her 2nd annual Community Circle  (hint hint) and as a bonus  we got 'free membership' on her site...so that is another bonus...

  How long have you read Ann's site???? Just curious. Oh....and which college did you meet your hubby to be? I LOVE a good romance!!!(with happy endings)

I'm really flattered you've read all my blogs from the beginning. You really have had a chance to follow me as a beginner!!! Smile & you didn't mention a word about needing any R & R after having done so! Smile

Any hints or tips you want to share with us...we'd love to hear them!!!

( Oh , E & I do get to Bend every year or 2 so it would be GREAT to meet you personally!!!) Let's work on that for maybe this fall!!! Be forewarned...I will pick your brain!!! SmileSmile In the meantime you can send in photos of things you do etc.

There are media links and forum links etc etc.

Welcome to AnntheGran!!!

Oh and PS

Your 2 cents are worth a million to me!!! Smile Oh and 1 more question (for now)...by chance do you do Hawaiian quilting???

Kimberly51......What a cute picture!!!

WHAT a GREAT gift you gave to yourself on your 40th birthday!!!!

Thanks for sharing YOUR dream and your 'going back to school" story

SOOO you are a professional photographer and followed your dream!!! That is sooooo great!!!! We LOVE hearing these stories!!!

   I love your father's saying....I think that makes SOOOOOO much sense and what a way to look at life! I just love it!!! Thanks for sharing!!!!

   If you'd like to share more on 'life at home being self employed' we'd love to hear it. ( How many hours do you average a day do you think.)

  Thanks for ALL the kind hints and encouragement you gave me.

It will be SO much fun to 'walk the beginner's path with you and the other newbies' on this site. We can really be supportive of one another and

we can really learn a lot from those who have been doing this for years.

   I hear you on the 'financial vs personal satisfaction' angle.....it's great if the 2 can be at the same time, but if not...sometimes it is just what we need to take a good look at what we are doing and how we are feeling....and do a little tune up or a major overhaul....but isn't it great how life is though....we have so many '2nd chances' and incredible opportunities if we are open to them.

I sort of had tunnel vision at times but my life has been much richer once I was

open to 'leaving my 'secure' teaching position with a district I'd been with for years...but oh the opportunites after making THAT change.

    Boy good luck on the digitizing.....I'm open to letting some 'expert' do a beginner's class on the subject at the art studio....so if anyone is interested and will get that organized...I'm more than happy to help provide a space for it.

   Yummmmm plum jam.... what state are you in....if you care to share that.


OK Serene...you 'kept woman' ...SmileSmile...Even though your hubby isn't coming, I'd still love to talk to him....Mr. Antarctica w/8 years of experience there!!!!..It's a bit hard to pick his brain long distance though...but I WILL try! Smile

Holy Cow ....what Greek to me language are you speaking here???....3D,4D???? Now a 40 D I do understand.... 44DD even more....but the others???So  seriously, & this is a real question...am I to assume there is also a 1D and a 2D??? If so....I haven't done any of the D's yet so I am sure not the person to answer you about that!!! Check with our experts.....I'm the NEW kid on the embroidery block!!!

 Do you LOVE MONK???? (Now that is one OCD ya just gotta love!!! & makes it easier on all the OCD's in the world...don't cha think?


Oh Sunrai....what a GREAT idea about a forum on 'disabilities' and ajustments to them....There are some really great things happening out there and we'd love to hear about it!!!

Well it's 7:30 pm....I 'paused' the 5 o'clock news!!! Oh dear...I did have 3 phone calls in between....my friend who  went to the beach just called and told me a can of pineapple slices had sprung a leak all over her cupboard while she was gone....never a dull moment. Smile

Everyone have a WONDERFUL 1st weekend in August!!!! Smile


Looks like another group is in the making....??the Oregan Bound Bunch???I'm so looking forward to meeting up with all of you. August would not work for me. Sorry. I hope we can get it all worked out. We have time, but time does fly. I just got a chance to look at the CF groups pics they are very impressive. Looks like a fab gathering. Maybe ours will be a bit different, but just as wonderful. Let's keep the planning going.


jalcumbrack 8/2/2008 8:55:04 AM

Well Al,

Include one Floridian in your Oregon bunch,PLease!


Hi Cathy!

Thank you for the welcome. I actually did not pay to write you. I could not figure out who to make a comment and I was told hat I had to sign in. I have been here for several months and I got the the newsletters and decided there such cute designs here that I had to join the club so I did.

I am from Oahu and parents live near the Waialele Golf Course. I came to Oregon and attended college in Bend in 1970 and met someone that I later married in 1977. After graduating from college I went back to Hawaii and worked at a church that was on the top of a nursing home in Waikiki and I worked on 3 bulletins a week, English, Chinese and Hawaiian. I do not really know alot of Chinese and Hawaiian but I know some. I am Chinese and my ancestors came to Hawaii to work in the sugar cane and pineapple fields and my paternal grandmother was a mail order bride.

The guy I met wanted me to come back to Oregon so I came back in 1975 and lived in Salem and  I had plans to stay with a girl freind from college but that did not work out so I decided to stay and I worked for the State of Oregon for 2 years before I got married.

My daughters ages 24 and 21 are French, Itialian, Irish and Chinese.

I do not do Hawaiian quilting but it is something that I would like to do. I make doll clothes mostly for the 15" - 18' dolls and I sell what I make.

I would love to meet you some day and perhaps we could do that some day as I do come up to Portland now and then. I am not that crazy about driving in the snow but I do that very carefully. We can go shopping sometime at share ideas about ME, sewing and having fun and getting to know each other.

Please do take a look at my blog and see what I am up to. I have not updated it lately but have to do that.



travelbug1237 8/2/2008 9:19:56 PM

HH Judy...You ARE included ...we love transplants...Smile

Laurie...What an interesting background!!! For sure, let's get together and let's NOT do it in the winter. I so agree that driving in the ice and snow is NO fun at all. Now that I am retired I stay put & you being from Hawaii...well goodness, no wonder you don't feel comfortable doing so.

  E and I both love Hawaii and I loved downtown Waikiki too....lots of traffic now though...goodness!

I just SO love the Aloha spirit throughout the islands, the music, flowers and

the beauty of the islands themselves!!!

  It will be so much fun to connect with you. You are so welcome to stay overnight at my place and we will ME the night away. SmileSmile

   That's so great you got your nursing degree. Bend CC??

Glad you joined Ann's site...She has some great specials!!! Smile

and HER designs are darling...She actually did many herself!!!

Cute cute cute!!! Welcome to AtG!!!

serenemachine2 8/3/2008 1:58:22 AM

Cathy, have you heard from my friend  Taylor yet???  And yes you can talk to my hubby, his voice I'm willing to share!!! (: (:  I don't think there ever was a 1 or 2 D, but maybe??  I started with the 3D Embtroidery software that allows you to "work" with a design., i.e. resize, change colors, etc.  The software came with my Viking Designer 1.  Not that I did much "working" (lol)Like you I DId alot of "buying" (lol)  Keep up the great blog!!!

laughingrain 8/3/2008 4:45:27 AM

I love the way your cherries look.  I have a beautiful jar of my cherry preserves on my desk.

If i did not have to clean up this crazy house I might have more time to be a ME er took me awhile to figure that term out but i have it now,

I like to use ME designs to quilt with.  So much fun!


travelbug1237 8/3/2008 12:02:40 PM

HH Serene...Nope...not a word...He must be too busy reading my newest blog that came out this weekend...and he hasn't come up for air yet! ..Smile It's old and  new  ( I wrote it the day E left for Alaska but it just got published because I was 'behind' because of my  grad classes. So...I'm still answering comments from here and there so  I am switching back and forth....SmileSmileSmile That's a 1st. Smile

Thanks for the nice compliment! Smile & thanks for....... 'sharing' SmileSmileSmile I'm gonna pick his brain!

HH LaughingRain...I don't think we've 'met' before...so HI !!!

I love your 'call sign".  There is a proper name for it that starts with an "A" .

I think it's called an Avatar....anyway I LOVE  "Laughing Rain!!!" Tell us more about how it came to be...if you would. Smile

So...tell us more about you!! How long have you been an Ann the Gran-er???

Oh, so you are a quilter...oh...boy is that sure is taking off like crazy again.

You will find other avid lovers of the craft on this site and Ann has a special section on quilt stuff too....There is just SO much going on in that area now. ...I caught a small section on PBS with someone using a bleach pen on a piece of fabric that was COOL and another who used a little gizmo device to blow paint and to write sayings on their quilt blocks! Boy....is this a far cry from my 1st time trying to quilt as a newlywed (1st marriage) and detesting every pin *** and 'your stitches are too far apart'..days.

    I can see where machine embroidery would certainly be more appealing to me as far as the 'work' part goes...and the 'play part' oh my goodness.....my girlfriend Kitty just did a 'landscape' and it is BEAUTIFUL....and then there are the 'panel's you can buy  which I REALLY think makes a lot of sense....( had to buy a few cuz they were sooooooo gorgeous...) found out too you can just put them on canvases instead of quilting! They ARE works of art...Oh my goodness...I can just see why you quilters are totally hooked....but I am TOTALLY going to restrain myself and stick to learning to ME 1st!!! If I could buy a panel and ME a border and then just GLUE it together...then I might quilt. It will take me quite awhile to recover from those early memories of 'quilting' the old fashioned way and totally being embarrassed at 'my section' of the quilt...which all had to be torn out...by those in charge there....I tried my hardest,  I bled and I then I quit! The quilts were to be given to humanitarian projects and so for that reason I participated...but when I was causing more work for the other ladies I decided I would help in other ways...buying school supplies! Smile So...I have staunchly avoided 'quilting' ever since....but now with the new machines etc there MIGHT be a day I will do one....but the canvas idea I love for the time being.Smile

Sooooooo enough on that....

  Thanks...I love the way they (cherries ) look too...I have them up in a cupboard with a glass door and they look so pretty there...Yes I do agree....but then I have this overwhelming desire to eat them...and so it is a tug of war. I have to 'dole them out ' for the year and hope that next year's crop will be great & not freeze etc.  Home made canned cherries are my favorite....that along with home made grape juice!  Do you can other things?

  OK LR ( laughing rain) let's seriously talk about 'cleaning house' sometime.

I have the VERY same issue!!! Let's get this brain stormed out and so that we

figure out a way to do WHAT we love to do creatively instead of always


   I think I will do a blog on that and ask for input.

There are ways...


I just got a phone call...E was in line with Greta VanSusteren, attorney/commentator on Fox News ..that I LOVE to watch...Anyway...I got to talk to her!!! Oh my goodness...I asked her ( after telling her I love her and that she is just SO smart and my favorite news person) anyway...if she just got off a cruise and she said no...that she just got back from Korea!!!

Oh how exciting was this...!! ???? Oh wow!!!

You heard it 1st , live from Oregon...where Greta has been!


OK...I need to get going.....

Thanks to all of you who take the time to read and write me!!!

Have a great Sunday Everyone!!!!

kimberly51 8/5/2008 1:13:09 PM


Easy answers first . . . I live in Union City, California  (SF Bay Area) The photo is my oldest Grandson when he was a baby, he turned 4 this week.

When I first started working at home, my husband was still working, he worked four 10 hrs days and I pretty much did the same.  When business got really busy, especially around Christmas, I would work about 4 – 6 hours the other three days of the week also.  In addition to my Custom Photo Jewelry Business, I also worked part-time with another Photographer, who I meet and became friends with when I was going to school.  I worked with him on photo shoots and help him start up his Studio.  I designed his business cards, sales flyers and brochures.  I also picked up part-time work doing graphic designs and did bookkeeping work for the company I used to work for full time.  For about two years, it seamed like I was always working.  My first full year of self-employment, my gross income was $30,000.

My life totally changed two and half years ago when my Dad lost his battle with colon cancer.  My Mom couldn’t live on her own, so I had to move her to an assisted living apartment close by.  After I got her settled, my husband started having major health problems and was off work for about 6 months.  He did go back to work for a few months, but couldn’t take the hours or the physical part of his job anymore.  He is now on permanent disability.  I’m so glad that I have some work that I can do from home, so I am here for my Husband and my Mom.  

I have to balance my life these days between family and work.  My busy time is still the Holidays, summer is usually slow and with the economy the way it is, who can say what this season will be like.  I still spend about 10 – 20 hours a week on my business.

As for tip and tricks on running a business at home, you could start a whole new blog.  I can say that you really need to be committed and self motivated.  You need to set priorities and you need to plan your time.  I’m not talking about scheduling every minute of every day, but you do need to make sure you have enough time to get things done. You need to enjoy what you are doing, feel satisfaction in your work and leave some time for yourself.

My priorities have changed now, but I still take my business seriously.  

My husband and I do a lot of activities together, he can’t do as much as he used too, but together we get done what we want and need to do.

When you are young, you spend a lot of time wishing your life away.  You can’t want until summer vacation, going to high school, getting your drivers license, turning 21, etc, etc, etc.  At some point in your life you realize how important ever day is and you want time to move slower, but it doesn’t.  As I get older, it seems to go by faster and faster.   Make the most of today and everyday!

travelbug1237 8/6/2008 12:28:46 PM


   THANKS so much for sharing and going into detail about how you d0 a home business & how to balance it out with family and obligations etc.

I KNOW this WILL help some of the readers on my blog who DO want to increase their income by doing machine embroidery!!!

  OH...and how SO true your last paragraph is!!! For me the switch took place more so in the last year. ( I would have thought it would have come sooner after the really bad car wreck but that was in '86, but I guess I still was in the

"i will live forever' phase)...Time does go by so quickly. E and I have to really make some decisions as to what and how we want to live the rest of our lives.

Since he is still working ( 43 year anniversary with Portland Fire Dept this week) he is going strong like he always has. He is NOT thinking retirement yet ....For me, it is different.

   Not only do I want to enjoy each day, I want to be of service to others even if it is in tiny quiet way to help as I see it. (or feel it.) Sometimes it just involves NOT being in a hurry!!!

I can't tell you how many times now I have ended up hearing an elderly person's life history ( and regrets, worries etc ) in a store.

( I know...some are thinking...huh...you Cathy.... you like to talk all the time...) Well I also am learning to LISTEN ( finally ) and that has been really a great experience too. It's just amazing what people have gone through and/or accomplished. I just LOVE hearing about people's lives...I learn SO much from others!! So on my blog....we REALLY  "Chat up a Storm" and it is A OK with me....I know it may drive some bonkers, but I do believe there is a niche for this style of blog on AtG.

   You hit the nail on the head too with setting priorities. That is the ONLY way I could accomplish what I did in the classroom and it SOOOOOO works.

Now that I am home and NOT on a schedule like that, I have slowed way down! Smile

  IF I do end up opening up the art studio/retreat...then I will need to get back into 'work mode' but for now I am taking a break and 'smelling all those roses I planted." Smile I appreciate the days  something doesn't ache! Smile

  I am SO sorry to hear about your dad's cancer and your loss.

Your Mom is so fortunate that she has you there to help her get settled into a new place by you. I am SO sorry to hear about your husband' s health issues too.  My goodness girl, how are YOU doing? You seem to have it all together and not only are you able to work successfully from home you are able to give a lot of love and support to your family, who needs you! That is really  wonderful!

  Please know that I appreciate EVEN SO MUCH MORE the time you took to answer a question that will help others!!!

So many CYBER HUGS going your way,


kimberly51 8/7/2008 9:55:22 AM

I’m doing fine now.  Sometimes I wish I had more time for myself, but you do what you have to do.

My Dad’s death was really hard for me to accept.  For about a year after, I was really depressed.  I probably should have gotten treatment for the depression, but I had too much to do and felt I had to be strong for my Mom and Husband.  I didn’t have the energy to do anything, didn’t enjoy doing the things I always did and didn’t care about anything but getting done what had to be done.  Looking back on it, I realize what was going on with me, but you can only learn from the past, you can’t go back and do it over again.  Now I appreciate more when I have a great day and also when it’s just an OK day.

ME is something I wanted for myself, something that makes me feel good. I also made some personal life style changes this year that I feel good about.  I changed my eating habits and started get more active again and so far I have lost 46 lbs.  

My next post will be on your other blog page; I too shopped up a storm and will share my favorites.

Make the most of today and everyday.


travelbug1237 8/7/2008 10:22:09 AM

HH Kimberly,

 Well 1st of all CONGRATULATIONS on your weight loss!!!! That is truly FANTASTIC....46 pounds - what  an awesome accomplishment!!!

Share more with us your strategy if you'd like. Smile

  That's so true, that we can learn from the past...not change it....but it sure can help us with future decisions and situations we put ourselves in etc.

  Finding something you love to do really helps and I'm so glad that you have found that joy in machine embroidery. Ya know, no matter how crummy a person's day ( or life for that matter has been) with MEing one can make INCREDIBLY cute and/or beautiful things that can bring immediate joy and pleasure and can CHANGE how one feels ( at least for me) .....then if you do indeed give some of those items to others you can change how THEY feel too. Whammo fast!

   That's how I feel about flowers and giving arrangements. I have yet to not have a person 'smile' when they get an unexpected bouquet.

  ( I hope to do the same with ME'd items that I have done myself. So far

the only ones I have given away are done by somebody who is showing me how and know what they are doing!!! )  It's a process and it's been frustrating and humbling....but it is STILL coming along. I hope ME will be like flowers are to me.

   Do let me know when you are having those GREAT days and share with me what you've done....be it MEing, walking, eating healthy etc.

    I know for me...that if I've had a rough day ( car trouble recently comes to mind)lol   IF I take a shower and wash my hair...I ALWAYS feel better no matter what has happened!!!

 There were more than a couple of times when I was going through a divorce that I showered more than needed physicially....but emotionally I just needed to wash the pain away and it really really helped. (When I could afford foo foo good smelling body soap that helped even more!)...Another mood lifter for me was to put on some music I loved. Back then I put on Neil Diamond's UPBEAT songs....( not the slower reflective songs that I love too) but when trying to 'get

travelbug1237 8/7/2008 10:23:01 AM

Oops...my note to you got cut off Kimberly...Sorry.

Thanks again for taking the time to write. I loved hearing from you!!!


Thanks for sharing about your accident and how you came through the recovery and there being light at the end of the tunnel.  I have printed this section and will share this with others who are experiencing adversities in their lives, also helpful for myself.

My original teacher training was as an Art/Craft teacher , but I also did my Masters in Special Education.

I live in Australia and may be one day I might be able to join  you in  Oregon. It would be good to come in our winter.  But not next year as my husband wants to do the Tour de France.  He has never wanted to go overseas before, so whilst he is cycling I will find plenty of Art etc to see.

travelbug1237 11/18/2008 2:14:34 AM

sdrayton,   I would LOVE to have you visit me in Oregon!!!! I've had an open invitation to trade a night's lodging for a machine embroidery lesson!!!! Smile

It appears we have some experiences in common....our teaching training and

master's work in special education.

  I LOVED your beautiful country of Australia!!!! Enjoy that Tour de France!!!!

What a wonderful trip that will be!!!

Chatty Cathy in Oregon

P.S. I am happy to hear that my experiences with my car accident and recovery has helped you and may help others! ( Glad it helped someone!!!..I sure would not want to go through that again!!! SmileSmileSmile

I am painting also with acrylics and I found that what I learned by doing that it helps me with embroidery. When you have a pre-made embroidery file sometimes you want to change the colors to suit your need and in painting you learn how to go from dark to light from background to foreground and how to add highlight and interest to a picture. In embroidery you can do the same by sometimes adding a few small details that gives the whole thing even more depth. Sometimes unless you look closely you don't even really see it but the brain registers it. Just like in taking pictures with a camera when looking through the view finder you don't see things at time but then in the picture it can be disturbing. Taking off balance etc. So you eyes don't always see everything but your brain registers it . Its like looking pictures of a person that seem to be exactly alike but for some reason you like one better than the other but the small difference is that one of the pictures someone made the pupils bigger which subconsciously your brain sees but your eyes don't. It isn't till someone points out what the difference is then then comes the aha moment. The same thing I have found when presenting people with embroidery. Even though they seem to be exactly the same in one I added a few small details and that's what ppl will go for. So painting teaches you a better eye for detail.

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