In response to some of the comments, yes we've had a unusually cold winter this year - what's all this about global warming?! It's been 17 years since it's been as cold as we had a few weeks ago. We had 4 nights of really freezing temperatures which has basically ruined our back yard. We have a lot of plants like hibiscus bushes which are frost-sensitive. They can take a short spell of frost but not the extended cold front we had. We will have to replant some this spring but that's the way it goes. It has been cold and rainy this week as well. We feel bad for the visitors who come to get away from winter elsewhere in the country as usually we are having good weather this time of year. And yes Red, I am a regular at Attic Needlework! I feel very fortunate to have it here and it is a dangerous place for me of course. I can rarely get out of there without spending a chunk of money. Luckily it is about 40 minutes from my house so I usually only get there on Saturdays, otherwise our family finances would be in deep trouble! For anyone else reading this, a trip to Attic Needlework is mandatory if you ever get to the Phoenix area. Someone else asked about the Family Arts Needlework shop. It is still here, it moved about a mile away from it's old location but still doing fine. I used to go there more often when they had cross-stitch but about 2 years ago they phased out cross-stitch and started stocking knitting supplies instead. The knitters and scrapbookers are taking over! They are still primarily a needlepoint shop but I do go there occasionally because they carry a lot of fibers - WDWS, GAST, all the Silk 'n Colors with the matching hand-dyed ribbons, and Waterlillies silks. One of things I'm excited about is getting Hobby Lobby which has started to move into Arizona. Unfortunately I read on one of the bulletin boards that they are reducing or phasing out their cross-stitch department. Doesn't it figure when they finally get to my area darn it. I wish there would be a stitching boom like there has been with knitting and scrapbooking because so many cross-stitch stores around the country have gone out of business.
I am still working away on my Christmas stocking unfortunately. There is so much backstitching to do and it's somewhat tedious but I'm getting through it. I will be glad when it's done - it's at the top of my UFO list. Next up on the task list is finishing my carrot ornaments from the Cricket Collection - I stitched several when the patterns first came out but never finished them into ornaments to hang on a little Easter tree. I haven't had much time for stitching in the past few weeks as my FIL is recuperating from knee replacement surgery and DH and I have been helping take care of him. So far he is doing fine but it's going to take a while before he'll be self-sufficient again.