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Stitching madness

So I've been really into cross stitching since June. It was a quick and portable thing to do while packing for the move. Since then, I've done a fair amount of it and even got my first commission for it. Yay!

I started with Apple Jack. Pattern isn't mine; it's one available on deviantArt for free.
 photo applejack.jpg
I was pretty pleased with it, so I made more, only this time with my own patterns.
 photo fluttershy.jpg photo pinkiepie.jpg photo rarity.jpg photo twilightsparkle.jpg

Then my husband asked me for this:
 photo nope_finished.jpg

That one took me a while. I worked on these in the meantime, based on sprites from a Sailormoon video game:
 photo sailorjupiter.jpg photo sailormoon.jpg photo sailormars.jpg photo sailormercury.jpg photo sailorpluto.jpg photo sailorsaturn.jpg photo sailorneptune.jpg photo sailoruranus.jpg

And a few other things:
 photo zelda_navi.jpg photo sacredcup.jpg photo phonecase.jpg photo bones.jpg

And a commission. Yay!
 photo makeitso_stitch.jpg

Conclusion? Cross stitch is way too addicting and someone needs to take these things from me before I kill my wrists. And I thought making plushies was bad for that.

Long time, no see

So it's been a few years since the last time I really used this thing. A lot of things have changed in my life since then. Rereading some of my old entries makes me feel really embarrassed. I mean, seriously younger self? Seriously? Two years has done a lot of things to me.

For starters, I've gotten out of La Loche. I ditched my car a couple winters ago and the utter helplessness of the situation prodded my husband into looking for a job in the southern part of the province. He found one and we wound up moving to a town 5 hours south of where we were. If you're familiar with Saskatchewan, we moved to North Battleford. It's roughly an hour and a half away from Saskatoon. My kids did really well in school, I found a job I liked (and lost it 4 months later because I sucked at it), found another job that I'm not really sure if I like, and just recently we bought a house. We've had possession of it for a little more than a week now. It's amazing to not be renting anymore. The realization that we won't be moving again is really starting to hit home and it's nice. Our house is in a small town called Cut Knife, about 50 km away from North Battleford. It's where my husband got his job when we moved last year and he really likes the community. It's super small and everyone knows everyone else, but this is a thing we got used to up north. It's not really that weird.

On a personal note, I've finished and self-published two of my novels and a short story. Sales on those aren't as brilliant as I'd like, but they do well enough. I even brought them to a convention in June and I sold out of one book. This is largely due to the fact that that one in particular was one I'd been writing for a really long time. High School is what I generally tell people, but in truth it incorporates a lot of things from a series of stories my BFF and I were writing in junior high. So it's old enough to be super detailed and I'm really passionate about it. When describing the two books to potential buyers, I guess I got more enthusiastic about that one in particular so more people bought it. Which is awesome. It's nice to know I can sell it to people.

I've recently gotten really into cross stitching again and it's a nice, relaxing thing to do. I'm not doing anything overly fancy or complicated yet, mostly just My Little Pony characters. Once things settle in the house, I'll be doing more and in a wider variety.

I lost my cat last year, too. Jaffa contracted severe feline diabetes. Treatment was possible but would have only given her a few months, so she was put down. I've learned that I have a hard time coping without a cat in my house, so a few weeks later, on our planned trip back to Edmonton, we got a new one from the SPCA. His name is Sully. As much as it hurts to replace Jaffa, he's an amazingly sweet animal. Unlike my previous cat, he likes everyone and is really super social. I still miss my girl, but Sully's a good cat.

So much has happened in two years that I'm suddenly finding it really hard to sum up. What's important? What isn't? Hard to say. At any rate, I'm back.



For the record, this is in response to a recent news article.

I don't even know where to start, really. Everyone outside of town is making such a huge deal out of this. Not to say its not a big deal, but this is where I live. This happened on Thursday night. I didn't hear anything about it until I poked at facebook last night. I spent part of my morning reading the comments on the article.

I went from 'oh, LA, stay classy' to 'wow, people who don't live here are such ignorant ass hats' in very little time at all.

This incident isn't common to the town at all. We're far more likely to have bouts of vandalism and break ins. My husband commented once that if he were to ever write a memoir of some kind it would be called "Memories of Truck Burnings Past" in reference to the sheer number of burned out cars up here. You know, that sort of thing. That's my town and that's normal.

But this thing wasn't normal. I'm appalled at the behavior of these people. The article gives a number of 50-70 people possibly involved. Its a relatively small number compared to the population. (NOTE: The article claims there's 2300 up here. It's more like 3500 from what I've heard.)
commenter What happened sucks and I really hope the RCMP come down hard on those responsible, but for the commenters to compare this incident to the Vancouver riot is just plain ignorant, especially when followed by comments that they'd never come up here as a result. Plenty of other places in Canada have riots and no one boycotts them. This is a small town and there's not a lot up here, but every time I show people pictures from around here I get told its a beautiful place. And it is! Yes, there's a lot of gang activity. Yes, there's an issue with litter (and those Google street view maps mentioned in one of the comments are actually a few years old; the problem has gotten better now that the town actually has garbage cans set up for people to use). Yes, there are people up here who aren't the greatest, but you'll find that in every town.

The thing it, it's a beautiful area. Most of the locals I know are wonderful, hard working, dedicated people who try very hard to enhance the community. Ton insist that the RCMP and hospital services be removed from this town is...beyond wrong. Were this to happen, you would be leaving the majority of the population, local and otherwise, without protection and without medical care. The nearest village to us is Bear Creek, approximately a half hour's drive down the highway. After that, Buffalo Narrows is yet another half an hour away. Say those two services were relocated to Bear Creek (as Buffalo already has a hospital and RCMP). Say you are in need of emergency services. Would you want to drive that long to get them when you may well need it immediately? Somehow, I doubt it.

Blaming the incident on the fact that those responsible for the rioting were First Nations doesn't help. Most people this far north just happen to be either First Nations or Metis. This is a town were Caucasians are a clear minority and that's not even getting into the East Indian family that lives here now or the Chinese that run the convenience store at the end of my street. It's true, but it's irrelevant. It would be like going down to an Asian or Hispanic dominated community and saying that those involved in a riot there were of those ethnic backgrounds. No, really? In a community with that kind of population? *rolls eyes* The stereotypes don't need any more feeding. It's bad enough as it is. I'm well aware of the issues involved in this kind of community; I've lived here for four years now and going on five. There's not a single native stereotype that I haven't heard of or seen first hand. Not racist, I'm just saying...it's easy to see where it comes from.

I guess what I'm really trying to get at is that I'm sick of people bashing this relatively nice little place based on the idiotic actions of a really small percentage of people. Yes, they make the rest of us look bad (and I've been up here long enough to count myself as a part of the community), but the people I've met are all pretty nice. Granted, most of my exposure comes from having a husband and many friends who work as teachers and from working as a substitute teacher myself at both schools. It's a position where you don't just deal with the hard working locals who work at the schools, but you also deal with the parents of some of the more difficult children. There are some parents who genuinely try to get their kids to school every day and try to help them succeed. And then there's those who don't really care what their kids do.

LA, as it's known by those who live or have lived here, has its issues. Every town has its issues. Don't try to argue otherwise. I like it up here most of the time and I'd really like people to do some damned research into the town before they go and make snap judgements about it. Talk to the locals. Come up here and do some fishing, or hunting if that's your inclination. There's lots of great camping sites as well.


Naarmamo - day 31

So this is the painted version of yesterday's image. And this is what it looks like with the background added in.

Naarmamo - day 30

I'll be giving her hair and clothes later today. I know what I'm doing with this image. You guys will just have to wait until tomorrow for this one. *evil laugh* But seriously. It'll be good.

Remember that wolf I drew a few days ago? I painted him last night.

NaArMaMo day 29

Two more of my comic characters, Mienna and Inhari before thy were separated.

Didn't do any painting yesterday. I've been getting everyone ready for school tomorrow.

Naarmamo - day 28

I got bored with standing poses so Inari is sitting today.

Khirsve is finally finished. Those scales took more hours than I want to count right now. There were, like, 300+ layers of them. *wibble*

Naarmamo - day 27

Drawn for an art exchange. Was unhappy with the result. This one, however, is much better and will be painted and such.

A WIP</a< of yesterday's image. Need to do those scales.


Naarmamo - day 26

I'm not looking forward to paiting this one as her tail is covered in little itty bitty scales that I'm going to have to do by hand.
This is Khirsve of House T'leek

Yesterday's image is done. Part of me is satisfied as he doens't look at all attractive to me, which was the point, but I'm not entirely happy with bits of it.

On a different note, my girl had her first 'day' of school today. Registration! As it turns out, her best friend is in the same class as her as is this little boy she really likes and a few other of her friends. She's going to have a great year.

Liam met his teacher and saw his classroom and he's pretty excited about school now, which is such a nice change from last year's crying and screaming about it

Naarmamo - day 25

So this fellow here is Likos of House Nehshar. His clothign is different than the otehrs because he's a scout, not a fighter.

Yesterday's image

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