Monday, November 23, 2009

How I spent my vacation

Hey, ladies, howze it goin'? Hope everyone is in fine fettle and stitching away!

I'm back from vacation... well, I was back 3 weeks ago actually. But, then, as usual, I was sick for a week after our vacation and then life kinda got in the way. I think that long involved road trips will no longer be a part of our vacation plans... too trying on this aging body! We had a really good time... well, most of the time anyway. I got quite a bit of stitching done on the tree. Lots and lots of buttonhole leaves...
Leaves on tree - left
This is the left side of the tree....

Leaves on tree - center
and here is the center portion...

Leaves on tree - right
Then we have the right side of the tree. I've been using some variegated threads I found at my local needlepoint shop for the first pass across the blocks. Here's a closeup of the leaves so you can see them a little better. As always, you can click on the picture and it will take you to Flickr where you can pick a larger size to look at if you wish.

Tree leaves closeup
This is a little blurry but I think you can tell what I have been doing. This was all done while I was on vacation. I stitched all the way across Texas, all the while I was at my mother-in-law's house and then I had to stop. I wore a hole in my needle-pushing finger and couldn't stitch anymore! Where was my thimble, you say... why, it would be at home where all good thimbles hide out. I was rather upset that I forgot it because I missed some quality stitching time!

Here is something else I was rather upset about...
Fluid & cowling
This is at a rest stop in the middle of Texas... see that little puddle underneath the van? That would be the power steering fluid leaking out of the hole we found out was in the power steering line. The cowling that you see there, that big black thing? That is supposed to protect the engine from stuff popping up from the road. Well, whatever popped up from the road went right through the cowling, partially ripping it off, and then right through the power steering line! Gah.. what to do? Well, Glenn took off the cowling and we headed for Houston. Pretty soon we started hearing this terrible noise in the front of the van and we stopped at tiny gas station in Van Horn, Texas. We ground to a stop and there we sat. We couldn't start the van because something seemed to be all frozen up. Glenn called a Toyota dealer in San Angelo and found out that the belt he was looking at only powered the power steering pump so... he used a knife and cut off the belt! We gingerly turned the key and the van started right up! WooHoo! Off we went again with a frozen power steering pump, and consequently, no power steering... for another 300 miles. Long story short, we had to get the power steering pump and the belt replaced in Houston. What a mess!

Happy 35th Anniversary to us! Oh, yes, this all happened on our 35th Wedding Anniversary. Ah... the joys of the road trip! Luckily, I was so involved with getting everything ready for the trip with all the important things like piecing my quilt and sorting threads and beads that I didn't make reservations in San Antonio like I wanted to. We stayed with Glenn's sister for an extra day in Houston while the van was fixed.

And now, if I was a good blogger, I would be telling you about how I visited with Debra in Houston. I'd tell you all about her beautiful work that I got to see in person and I'd show you the goodies I brought to share with her. However, once again, I was so focused on getting things ready for the trip that I FORGOT that she lived so close to Houston! I didn't remember until we were headed back to Phoenix and by then it was too late. I was sooooo mad at myself I couldn't see straight! Sometimes I'm such a twit! My apologies, Debra! Next time!

OK, that's enough for now. I've made some further progress on the tree and I'll show you that in a few days... no, really! Only a few days!!! :0)