Annette's Acre

Stitching, knitting, reading, life…whatever catches my eye
March 13th, 2011

Pillows, Projects and Plasmas

Here is the March pillow from Pine Mountain, modeled by our Ms. Duchess:

I received two lovely project bags from Susan this week.  The blue and white one will house Chatelaine’s Swan Lake.  I’ll be organizing the kit and putting in first stitches…. today!!

Thank you for the condolences on the untimely loss of our beloved plasma TV.  We spent hours last weekend researching and shopping for a replacement.  The original store we bought from (and were quite happy with the service) is now going out of business, so we had to find an alternative….

Sunday, DH and Z were off to the local Sears and Best Buy.  We learned that this is an interesting time of year for a major electronics purchase.  The 2010 models are being cleared out to make way for the new 2011 models announced earlier this year at CES. 

We knew we wanted another TV at least the size we had just lost (50″).  I was also hoping to get something internet-ready given our love of Netflix and Hulu 🙂  3D was also of interest given we are HUGE baseball fans and ESPN has a 3D channel on DirecTV. 

Finding those three in a set that we liked proved to be a challenge.  Budget was not too much of a factor (I am amazed at how the prices have dropped on plasma TVs!!)

After DH’s initial outing on Sunday, it was time for research.  And more research.  We considered buying online (too scary to buy something this big sight-unseen).  We considered switching to LCD/LED (viewing angles and lighting in our living room are more conducive to plasma). 

The problem was that we were limited on where to shop.  DH and I went out Monday evening, visiting *two* Sears locations and Best Buys.  We found a couple serious contenders at Sears, but couldn’t find a salesperson to save our lives.  We had questions but no one was around to answer them, let alone take our money.

The one common theme…. “new models will be here in a month.”  At this point, I was almost resigned to having to go that long.  Surely, I could handle being a few weeks behind on Glee and Bones? (K works on those nights and we usually watch after she gets home and dinner/chores are done)  The DVR will hold out, right? 

Tuesday, while having lunch with a friend, she mentioned a audio/video place near my office that designed home theatre systems.  This was in Scottsdale, a notably more affluent area of town than my little Mesa.  Perhaps the concept of customer service won’t be quite as foreign….?  I’d certainly pay a little more for that.

I called DH and suggested he pick me up from work and we take a chance.

As soon as we walked in to StarPower, we knew we had a winner.  No empty spots on the wall.  More brands than any other place we had visited and we were greeted as we came in.  We discussed our requirements with Ron, who was very knowledgeable of all the brands and options.  We looked at several models, asked the questions that we couldn’t find answers to in our research and finally found the one for us.  A Samsung 63″ plasma.  While it was last year’s model, it met all of our wishes and then some at a price well within our budget.

We also elected to upgrade our sound system with a new soundbar and receiver.  Overall, not a bad hour for Ron 😉  But then, that is what happens with good customer service and knowledgeable salespeople.  Once that relationship is established, it’s easy to keep it going.  DH and I had planned to do the upgrade soon, but this made it much simpler for all.  DH also got a new pair of headphones thrown in to the deal 😉

All was right in my world…..

Until Friday.

The plan was to have everything installed this coming week.  However, there was a small problem….

The lovely new TV?  Last year’s model?  They couldn’t find one anywhere available….

Drat.

But, their suggested solution has won my business forever.

They will give us the next model that is coming out “in about a month” (which happens to be 64″) but rather than make us simply wait, they will provide a “loaner” TV this week and install the other components.

At no additional charge.

Granted, I don’t know the size or type of TV we’ll be getting as our loaner and won’t until *this* Friday.  I can’t imagine it’ll be a 19″ CRT, though…. and right now anything is better than what we have.

 So that’s been my week…… more as the saga continues!

January 18th, 2011

Drive-by 1/18

Drive by posting….

Thanks everyone for the justifications comments on the Swan Lake purchase.  I’ve moved past the guilt at this point, so am ready to get stitching! 

Just have to wait on the kit now… ::tap tap::

Mirabilia RR layout is stitched and ready for mailing.  Picture forthcoming….it’s not the most exciting thing to show, but a finish is a finish!

For my BDB Sisters…. I am envisioning a bracelet from this Etsy seller with series covers… what do you think??

December 28th, 2010

Post Christmas Post

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!  I know I did.

We had a very quiet celebration.  Christmas eve found DH and K finishing off the gift wrapping and we broke with tradition and put all the gifts under the tree that day.  The closets were just too full 😉

Christmas morning, full stockings appeared from Santa.  Of course, given that Z is now 12, we all slept past 8:00a.  If it weren’t for three dogs ready to go outside, Christmas would have started even later.

All gifts were very well received….  DH loved his new Swiss Army watch and additions to his music collection (Led  Zeppelin, Ella Fitzgerald, Superman and Star Wars soundtracks – import versions).  K was happy with a maru-dai (for kumihimo braiding), ASU sweats, movies (Avatar and Daybreakers) and games. Z made out the best of all – a wi-fi Kindle, an electronic snap kit (easily the winner of the gifts if measured by time spent already), a PSP game (Tron Evolution) and various other puzzles and books.

Of course, I didn’t do too badly either.  Lego model of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater, a gorgeous, monogrammed leather cover for my Circa agenda along with red metal rings and a red rollerball pen.  DH and K even made a visit to the LNS to pick out several small items for my stocking: Halloween needleminder, JustNan counting pins and needle slide (all Halloween themed), JABC Halloween pin set and a lovely scissor fob (again, Halloween beads).

Mom and Al joined us for dinner (ham, scalloped potatoes, green beans, brussel sprouts…yumm) and we had a much smaller round of gifts afterward (gift cards were a big hit this year LOL).

Sunday I put in hours on Summer Queen.  I have hope of finishing her yet this week, or at least before I head back to work on Monday.  I’ll definitely be starting Spring on New Year’s Day – floss and fabric are ready to go 🙂

I’ve also signed up for the next Mirabilia Round Robin.  I’ve got an idea for a layout and theme that will work with the piece just framed.  Just have to work out dimensions to find fabric and stitch the boxes 🙂

Another Kylie-created artwork for my header… so nice to have the ability to request custom header creations LOL

April 15th, 2010

TUSAL and More…

Business first… this month’s TUSAL

A little better than last month 🙂

Yesterday went very much as planned.  Miso Salmon and strawberry cheesecake at The Cheesecake Factory, a new food processor at Williams-Sonoma (thank you AmEx Membership Rewards), played with an iPhone and iPad at the Apple Store (still not decided on iPhone v Blackberry and the iPad is *way* heavier than I expected) and then home to relax, watch some baseball (go Braves!) and stitch a bit.

As it was my birthday, I chose to work on something for *me*.  No Round Robin. No Mirabilia Queen for DH. Something for me….

Here’s the before pic: Sea to Shining Sea from November

What I did not get done was putting together the giveaway…. soon.  Really soon…

April 14th, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me :)

(Click the picture if you don’t know what the symbol is… LOL)

Today, I’m 45.

I don’t *feel* 45.  Or maybe I don’t know what 45 is supposed to feel like?

In either case, the calendar says I’m 45, so that is what I must be 🙂

Celebration of this 5th anniversary of my 40th birthday commenced last weekend.  Saturday night found us (four of us plus Mom) at Cracker Barrel for dinner.  I came home with a little stash from Mom:

The floss/fabric is for A Stitcher’s Story.  Mom did good, eh?

Today’s plans include lunch with DH at The Cheesecake Factory (Miso Salmon… yummm), a little shopping at Williams-Sonoma (finally get my food processor!) and a visit to the Apple Store to play with an iPhone.  I’ll be upgrading my phone next month and trying to decide if I want a new Blackberry or make the switch to an iPhone….decisions, decisions.

I’ll also be putting together a stash giveaway to be posted later today 🙂

February 23rd, 2010

Randomness

Just some odds and ends to share….

First, I snapped this (with my Blackberry) yesterday as I was leaving work:

I was sitting in the vanpool van, this isn’t thru my windshield.  The rainbow was so bright!  It was lovely.

Here’s my Olympic knitting progress:

Sadly, my Olympic goal is not looking good.  This is a two-skein project and I’ve yet to finish the first one (seen on the left).  We shall see.

I did manage to finish the latest in the Mirabilia RR – this is a portion of Violet.

I also finished a couple books… and have to recommend one of them to any fan of good old fashioned sword/sorcery/epic fantasy.

The Way of Shadows by Brent Weeks

This is the first in a trilogy and by all that’s holy, do *not* read the blurb for the second book before you finish the first one.  MAJOR spoiler right there!!  It’s got magic, politics, fighting, assassins, heroes and a nice twisty plot 😀

February 10th, 2010

Things I’ve Learned

  • Stupid people will continue to do stupid things without any encouragement
  • Three weeks is way too long between nail appointments
  • At approx 2.5 weeks at least one nail will lift
  • Bandaids are useful for “holding” lifted nails and make it appear that all is well
  • One must remove aforementioned bandaid to use finger to pass security at work
  •  If I *should* work on a project, I have no interest in doing so
  • If I should *not* work on a project [cough] Olympic knitting [/cough] I really want to
  • I really really really like the new Jenny Bean sampler
  • But not on 40 count, maybe 36?
  • My LNS owner can talk me into a lot of things (like doing the new Autumn at Hawk Run Hollow on 30-ct.  Over one)
  • I really like the TV show “Bones”
  • I have a number of seasons to catch up on
  • I am a Mass Effect 2 widow
  • But that’s ok since I can play with the new laptop, watch my favorite shows and sleep soundly with the game in the background

Pssst.. Cheryl:  This is the yarnThis is the pattern 🙂

February 6th, 2010

Distractions

Life has been a little…. distracting.

This past week, I needed two clones to cover all the meetings on my calendar. 

As cloning has yet to come about, you can imagine how hectic this made the days.

I also got something new in the mail:

Waitress Red Laptop

My new personal laptop.  The color is OPI’s “I’m Not Really a Waitress” which just happens to be my favorite nail polish color 😀  The white lines aren’t there – just reflections.  I’ve been installing and favorite-ing and all those fun new computer things.

My stitching progress has not been much.  It has reminded me how much I dislike white-on-white (or in this case buttermilk on magnolia).

LUV Letters and Nero

The laptop wallpaper is Nero, our youngest schnauzer.  He’s the reason I came home from Vegas early but I’m happy to report he’s had no further issues.  He’s back to his lovable dopey self.