Saturday, September 30, 2023

An update...

Warning lots of complaining/whining/bitching ahead... remember this is diary of my life and I want to document this month as it has been one I will try hard to forget ... but I shouldn't.  Feel free to skip this post. 


Hello - I'm doing this update as I want to close out September and never have to talk about this again. So last week I told you of my 2 trips to the ER and one inpatient admission... well this week I added another  ER visit and another inpatient 2.5 day stay in the hospital where things got worse.

Let me summarize...

First trip to ER diagnosed with diverticulitis. Explained I was antibiotic resistant, was ignored and given low dose of antibiotic which kept it at bay for a couple of days and then let the infection come raging back.

Second trip to ER...  10 days later, yep infection has increased... white blood cell count now double what it should be and I have major bowel issues ... no more details are needed... you get the picture and it isn't pretty. So now I get 2.5 day of heavy duty antibiotics and I go home. 

Third trip to ER... again 10 days since I was there... infection/white blood cell count is now 3 times what it should be and they realize they have killed off all the good and some of the bad bacteria in my gut and now I have C-diff... I won't repeat the words I said (in my head)... C-diff is nasty... it is hard to get rid of... I was a prime candidate for it. Over 65, just did a recent round of antibiotics, and had been in a hospital.   Prior to this I've only had a passing knowledge of C-diff. It needs to be treated with a special antibiotic (very pricey)  and one should have NO other antibiotics.... but a hospitalist I saw in the ER when I was doped on on a very powerful painkiller (Dilaudid)  decided she wasn't sure it was C-diff ( I'd already had a swab for it at this point) and to "be on the safe side" continued to give me antibiotics for both diverticulitis and C-diff... totally wrong treatment... negated the effects of the C-diff meds while feeding the bad bacteria. It took another hospitalist to realize what was going on and stop the antibiotics for the diverticulitis and just give me the C-diff meds.

This second admission had me in a total dump of a hospital room. I took pics and I'm composing a complaint to the hospital. Baseboard heater next to my bed was duct taped together... and by the looks of it a 3 year old did it. There was a stain on the wall next to the bed... it was pinky red...maybe juice? maybe blood? ... I don't know... The visitor chair had a chunk missing out of the seat. The call button for my bed didn't work properly. The could hear me but I couldn't hear them. Didn't find this out till the morning I was getting ready to leave. There was painted chipped off the walls everywhere (the room use to be blue, not white). The floor had stains everywhere and the entry from the room to the bathroom was damaged... 2 chunks out of the riser that spans the gap and the difference of height of the floors... and every time I went to the bathroom ( which was more than I could count) the wheels of the IV cart would get caught and it would yank the IV in my arms... I am so bruised ... arms, hands, stomach...  This experience did make me realize that I'm not a good candidate for prison... I left on Wednesday as I had all my sanity could take.

Recovering at home. Thursday I did nothing but take pain killers and sit in my stitching chair but I could even pick up a needle. Friday some improvement. Put on real clothes, didn't take any painkillers and got out of the house for a little while. Saturday, better, actually have a bit of an appetite.  Realizing I am not going to bounce back from this quickly. I've spent more time in the hospital this month than the rest of my life combined. 

Working on trying to improve the good bacteria in my gut. Spoke with an infectious disease doc (oh did I mention C-diff is very infectious until you are on the antibiotic for 48 hours?)  I asked about eating things like Greek yogurt and  kefir and kombucha which he highly recommended. Taking extra vitamins and trying to rest because...  1 in 5 people relapse with C-diff in 2 to 6 weeks after the treatment... oh great... something else to add to my anxiety. 

I'm sure you've picked up that I am very angry about this situation. I feel that when I was admitted the first time someone should have been considering C-diff... instead I was visited by a pack of surgeons who seemed focused on whether or not they could re-section my bowel.  I think I should have been seen by an infectious disease specialist then, as I had all the classic markers of someone who could get it. 

Okay I need to improve my attitude... was suppose to have my hair colored and cut on Thursday... told my stylist who I've been going to for almost 10 years I couldn't make it... she's going on vacation for 2 weeks so I thought I'd have to wait till my next scheduled appointment which would make almost 9 weeks between... instead she's going to come in early on Monday to take care of me... and I do appreciate it. 

I hope that things in your life are going better... because if they aren't you have my deepest sympathy. 

I'm happy I'm showing improvement... now to make that a trend.

happy stitching-

carol fun 

Sunday, September 24, 2023

The best laid plans of mice and men...on a Slow Sunday...

Hello... well as the saying goes,

The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry...

and mine certainly did. When I was last here I had started 3 of my planned 7 samplers for my Birthday Extravaganza... oh I had high hopes for this endeavor... but it is not to be.   

My first draft of this post was filled in details of my experience which I have decided you don't need to be bored with... let me see if I can say it more succinctly. 

I had a bad diverticulitis attack. Put me in the hospital for 3 days. It has taken me about a week to bounce back, which is disheartening because in the past (like when I was 20 years younger) I would have recovered in 24 hours. Anyway, as I type this I am feeling sooooooo much better.  I've taken all my antibiotics and I'm following a low fiber, high protein diet for the next week or so. 

 To avoid diverticulitis you are suppose to eat a lot of fiber... but when you have diverticulitis you aren't suppose to eat much fiber... it's a conundrum.

Needless to say I haven't stitched much. I did do a day or so on my 4th choice of sampler. This was a last minute substitution on my part.  This is a modified version of Blackbird Designs Crowns & Shields. I'm going to do about 3/4th of it. 

I'm doing this is a monochromatic color scheme... DMC 829, 830, 831, 832, 833, 834... it is a gold with a green undertone and it matches the linen I dyed wonderfully. I plan to personal the little cartouches with family initials.

And at this point I decided to suspend starting the last 3 samplers I had chosen. They are kitted up and ready to go and I will get back to them.... but right now I'm not feeling like starting any more BIG projects. I need something small ... something I can complete in a timely fashion... and with that in mind I'm playing  with elements of  this... Hello Halloween by Teresa Kogut.

I'm going to do the little witches as separate little pillows...

Each little witch has a different dress and facial expression.

I found this piece of linen in my stash... pale swathes of green, orange and purple... 

originally  I thought I could squeeze 6 witches on the piece, but reworking my calculations said 4 was all I could do... and here is the first one I stitched...

Ain't she cute?  She's a shade under 3 inches tall on 32 ct... let's see if I can  get 4 done by Oct 31... 

Fortunately I had completed my Fall decorating before I got ill... and I'm really happy with the living room displays. I thought I'd just put things out in the same arrangement as last year, and there are some pieces in the same place but other stuff got changed up... 

Here's the wall quilt...

this year I opted for my acorn quilt... this block was a freebie and part of a larger SAL when I made it ... it is no longer free and I have no clue where my pattern is ...  here's a link to the pdf of the pattern.  Each acorn is a different Grunge fabric and the quilting by Delinda (here's her website) is dynamite!

The 2 level tier tray works great for these Fall pieces... the top piece is a Prairie Schooler  and the little guy tucked into the truck bed is  Pineberry Lane... Cats & Jacks.

From the top, the small display includes a white pumpkin mini quilt and Fall String by Lizzie Kate and little pillow finish of  Waiting for Harvest by Blackbird Design.

Middle shelf is my favorite pumpkin basket... this was from Henn Pottery (remember home sales parties?)  I've had this for years... a classic... the fraternal twin Bittersweet September pieces from Blackbird Designs... Autumn by Lizzie Kate fronting a small wooden trug and white pumpkin chart was called Autumn by The Stitcherhood. 

 The large display is looking quite nice ... IMHO... this year I skipped the straw the I usually strewn everywhere and just used fake leaves... cleanup will be a lot easier ... 

At the top I have the Fall Welcome from The Drawn Thread... below one of my favorite Blackbird Design pieces, Feast of Friendship.

The shelf below has Fall Most of All from Calico Confectionery and the Autumn Sampler from Lizzie Kate.

And the next shelf down has two pieces from Barbara Ana Designs... Autumn on the left and Autumn Keeper on the right.

When I post next time I will have moved onto  Halloween... gonna turn a lot of those pumpkins around and show their jack-o-lantern faces and swap out Fall cross stitch for Halloween cross stitch.  I'm enjoying the weather so much right now.... it is those halcyon  days of  mid 70 temperatures with no humidity... got all the windows open and keeping my dollars away from the utility company. They've sucked me dry this summer... and I dread winter as we are forecast to be colder and snowier than the past couple of years. 

I'll link up with Kathy's Quilts... planning on spending the day on the porch, reading blogs, stitching and probably a bit of napping too.  As for sage advice, get plenty of fiber in your diet so you don't spend your 70th birthday sipping ginger ale in the hospital.   

happy stitching-

carol fun 

Sunday, September 10, 2023

A rare occurrence on a Slow Sunday...

Hello -  okay do NOT get use to this frequency of posting... 3 weeks... IN A ROW???  ... unheard of!!!  But I thought I'd stop by and show you my 2nd start (of 7) for my 70th Birthday Extravaganza... and I have a bit of Fall decorating to share too...

First, the sampler.... 

this is Prairie Schooler No. 45 Garden Samplers... I'm doing the one on the right side of the chart... 

I painted the linen with Rit dye Apple Green and Lemon Yellow... using almost all the called for DMC flosses. Sooooo, I've been stitching Praire Schooler for years and years and years, and I've never come across what I would call an error, but I'm having an issue with this chart.  My goal was to get that saying stitched in the 4 day window I gave myself... okay to be truthful I hope to get everything above the saying done too but that wasn't happening. Anyway I got myself down to the phrase and pulled out the called for flosses 3787 for most of the saying and 935 for the highlighted words ... garden, plant, flower... now I'm stitching from a more recently re-released chart, not a cardstock orginial.  The picture on the chart I have shows a definite difference in the color of the floss for the majority of the saying and the highlighted words... the saying appears to be a gold-y color and the highlighted words are definitely green... however, 3787 is a green-y taupe... dark... and the same value as 935... huh??  I stitched a couple of words in 3787 and did NOT like it... so I frogged them and from my stassh,  chose 3045 for the words... it is a gold-y color... I'm happy with this but puzzled over the discrepancy... I searched to see if there was a correction for this chart but didn't find any.... oh well, I think it looks good so far. I think when I wrap up this Extravaganza it will be the first WIP I come back too. I know this is a sampler I'll display a lot during Spring/Summer. 

As for the saying... oh I'd loved to have a walled garden... but since my garden is in my front yard that isn't going to happen... pesky city ordinances regarding fencing and walls... instead I have this living wall...

those cannas are about 6-7 ft tall ... I started with 2 plants a couple of years ago... I think I've added in maybe 2 more... and they have spread like crazy... haven't dug them up for years and they get all this growth in just a couple of months. I LOVE the stripey yellow leaves... the variety is called Pretoria... those flashy orange blooms are icing on the cake... and it does give my garden a kinda walled vibe... wonder if I could add another flower bed in the front yard next to my neighbor....ooooohhh... more plants, less grass... sounds like a great idea, right?   I'm obviously delusional here as all I've done the last couple of weeks is moan and groan about all the watering I'm having to do. We haven't had a good rain in over 2 weeks and none is in the forecast....I love my garden but it is the time of year when I'm tired of watering... and yet I have dreams of more flower beds... yes... I'm crazy...LOL

Weather wise it has cooled down just a tad... I think the 90's are over ... forecast for next week has some days with highs only in the low 70s... my kinda weather!!  So I got up the energy to put away the Summer decor and my son graciously hauled the Fall decor from the basement and the quilts from the second floor and deposited all in the living room... I COULD NOT DO THIS without him....  I have a LOVE LOVE LOVE my Fall decor... I think it is the influence of the 70's ... burnt orange, harvest gold, avocado green and coppertone brown... my Mom LOVED those colors and painted our home with all of them. I remember her getting a new stove and refrigerator in the coppertone brown color... so groovy...  anyway here's my display out on the sunroom porch... I started here because I'm spending a lot of time out there crossstitching and admiring my flowers... and when the weather is cool enough I can open the window and the breeze is so nice...

Up top I have a Barbara Ana Design called Autumn Tree. I stitched this one by mistake... there are a couple of Barbara Ana Designs with trees and houses on the branches and stuff hanging from the branches.  I personalized this one by making the squirrel albino as we use to have one in the neighborhood. I was about 3 branches into this piece when I realized it wasn't the pattern I had searched for... the one I wanted was called just Autumn... and after I finished this one I stitched it ... a very happy mistake as I do love this one... and it pairs nicely with one of my few new Fall decor purchases, that large green glass gourd... now this piece was a real bargain... I got it at my local Meijers... it was originally priced at $29.99... and it hung around for quite a while... in fact I think it was after the first of the year that I saw it had been marked down... 75%... wow that would make it $7.50... so I put it my cart and got the groceries I had come for... when I got to the check out I was stunned when it turned out to be 85% off... I paid $4.50 ... you can't beat that!!

Below I have the adorable squirrels all decked out in their Sunday best from With Thy Needle & Thread... the pattern is called Autumn's Acorn Gathering.  I love the tie and the striped pants!!   And on the bottom shelf is an oldie but goodie from Ewe & Eye & Friends that is called Simply 855... I think that was a reference to the called for Anchor floss for this piece... I stitched it in some overdyed copper-y brown... love the squirrel in the middle and that over one alphabet... boy my eyes were better back then. 

Since yesterday was a bit cooler I did some clean up in the yard... filled 2 of those giant paper lawn waste bags.... soooooo much more to tidy up before its all over for the season.  I cleaned out the window boxes and went looking for pumpkins... WOW are they expensive this year... I wanted some small white ones... the ones the size of a grapefruit... first place wanted...hold onto your hat... $3 each for them!!  Second place was only slightly better at $2.50 each... waaaaaay more than I want to pay... gonna keep looking... of course after I go to 4 or 5 places I will have talked myself into that $2.50 each and probably would have saved myself about $20 in gas and hours of time..  sheesh... how I long for the prices of just 2 years ago...

So I'll link up with Kathy's Quilts today... planning on a quiet Sunday... rest of the week has something going on every day... getting the AC checked out... watching Elliott... lunch with a friend... and on Friday, to celebrate my birthday,  my older son is taking me to my favorite BBQ joint Sonny's... the location is about a 90 minute drive each way... I fell in love with Sonny's when I lived in Albany GA... I swear we ate there at least twice a week... and every time I went to Florida we would eat at Sonny's... I'm really looking forward to that. 

Hope you have a great week ahead!

happy stitching-

carol fun 

Saturday, September 2, 2023

Blue Moon phenomena on a Slow Sunday...Edited to add pictures

Oops... forgot to add picture..

 Hello ... well what do we have here?  A post 2 weeks in a row...what?  Definitely a Blue Moon the 2 Full Moons that just happened ... what a coincidence... the stars must have aligned too! 

Anyway  I wanted to share what I've done to kick off my 70th Birthday Extravaganza which has coincided with Sampler September on IG... here's the link..  I've started with the largest sampler on my list... Every Opening Flower by With Thy Needle & Thread.  I have LOVED this sampler from the first time I laid eyes on it, which was over a year ago,when it was the project for a retreat in Amana, Iowa.... I knew I'd have to wait a year before it was released to the public but the wait was worth it. 

Now this is on 32 ct (everything I do anymore is on 32 ct)... I painted it a pale tan with splotches of turquoise. As you can see in the picture I started in the upper left hand corner with the flower border... it was a bit fiddly when I began but I got into a rhythm ... the colors are so pretty and to me they look like little rosebuds... which got me thinking... about a couple of things... first off ,the older I get the more memories come flooding back at the drop of a hat... and sometimes lead to the drop of a tear... but let's not go there right now... back to the memory... rosebuds...  Robert Herrick...  Freshman English  class taught by Mrs. Rechtin at St. Thomas High School in Ft. Thomas, KY... 1967/68...

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
   Old Time is still a-flying;
And this same flower that smiles today
   Tomorrow will be dying.

The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun,
   The higher he's a-getting,
The sooner will his race be run,
   And nearer he's to setting.

That age is best which is the first,
   When youth and blood are warmer;
But being spent, the worse, and worst
   Times still succeed the former.

Then be not coy, but use your time,
   And while ye may, go marry;
For having lost but once your prime,
   You may forever tarry.

Now I've always thought this poem's theme was Carpe Diem, Seize the Day... and that is part of it... however in looking up the entire text I came across a analysis that I know was NOT discussed in Freshman English class... The proper title of the poem is To the Virgins, To Make Much of Time and I don't believe that is how Mrs. Rechtin titled it, as I always remember is as Gather Ye Rosebuds... anyway according to the analysis "Gathering flowers can be seen as a metaphor for sex or wooing here, for plucking the flower and enjoying it while it's still in the bloom of youth".... that was definitely NOT a discussion of my youth...LOL... good thing we didn't have the internet back then... anyway I will stick with the seize the day theme which is appropriate for my birthday extravaganza... gotta make the most of the 4 days I plan to spend with each sampler... no dillydallying... 

And another random memory... Mrs. Rechtin... she drove a beat up Renault ( why do I remember that? and I can't remember what I had for lunch? sheesh) ... she was strict and not well liked by her students... as I reflect she was a good teacher but we didn't appreciate it.  We knew where she lived and several times a year we would visit her home under the cover of darkness and TP her yard... TP,  as in toilet paper, thrown everywhere... OMG... and we were the "good" kids...I'm sure she knew who did it but she never mentioned it ... and she was the only English teacher for all 4 years I was in high school. This was small school.... my class had 48 kids... the total enrollment was about 225 ... it was over 50 years ago but sometimes it feels like it was just last week.... 

Okay, let me get back on's my progress as of this morning...

I will work on this tomorrow and then move on to my second pick... I think it will be a smaller piece as I don't get a lot of stitching done on Tuesdays as watching Elliott takes up my attention.  Oh I didn't get the Teresa Kogut sampler finished...

but I will get back to it the beginning of October as I don't have much more to do on it... 

Hope you are enjoying the Labor Day weekend... we had 3 lovely days last week... highs only in the upper 70's & low 80's... I turned off the AC and opened the windows... but it was fleeting... it is HOT today... 90 degrees...  and it is forecast to stay that way for a while... and it hasn't rained in over a week... there goes my water bill... I am sooooo ready for Fall weather... and I want to really enjoy it as I've been listening to weather predictions for this Winter and it ain't good for where I am in SW Ohio... forecasts are for below average temperatures and above average precipitation... short and sweet... cold and snowy... arghhh... we haven't had a bad winter in quite some time... I know we are due for it... last year I think we only had 2 real snowfalls  that were enough to shovel the sidewalk... not looking forward to that weather at all.

So today I'll spend more quality time with Every Opening Flower... not a lot on the calendar this week... next week is busier... 

I'll link up with Kathy's Quilts and check out on IG what everyone else is up too... but trying to limit that scrolling time as I have rosebuds to gather and stitch!

happy stitching...

carol fun