Saturday, April 08, 2006

Still Here!

When I started the title of this entry, the feature that fills in things you've typed before came up with two other titles that I've made similar to this one. That shows that I'm not as faithful as I should be to write! This week has just flown by. I know I've said that before, but really, I just don't know where the time goes.

So let's see, what's the latest with the Hutchens Family? I have a blessing to tell you about, which was part of why the week went so quickly - I was helping Wes with this blessing. I've mentioned Craigslist before. A couple of weeks ago, Wes looked on Cragslist's free section and found a 1995 Ford Escort being offered. All the lady needed was for the taker to pay for getting it out of the tow yard. We could swing that, so Wes responded to the offer. He was pleased to hear from the lady shortly, and they worked out the details of getting the car. It needed some repair, which is why she'd had it towed. It wouldn't start, and she lives in an apartment complex and couldn't keep a non-working car there indefinitely. Wes had the car towed to our home, where we couldn't leave it indefinitely either! The manager gave us a week to get it repaired. Long story short, for about half the value of the car, we were able to get it repaired and running. It runs great! Samuel is about to get his driver's license, and this will be "the car that he drives." Not technically his car, but the one he drives when he drives. It's nice to have two cars for taking people to church, hauling extra stuff to church, running around town (better gas mileage than our van), and things like that. I'll take a picture of it next week to show you. So this week, several portions of days were spent going back and forth to the repair shop, the insurance office, and such as that.

As a source of a little extra spending money, I've been writing short articles for a realtor in the US, to put on her website. They're mainly about the areas that she sells in, things to do, places to go, housing prices, schools, shopping, etc. I've been doing this for a few months now, but I had been very sporadic. I felt bad that I hadn't done more, so I made a time every afternoon to sit down and write. Every afternoon, some of my time has been taken with writing. The result is two articles written this week - much better than one every 3-4 weeks, yes?

Also during my free time, I've been looking at all those cross stitching blogs that a new friend pointed me to. Who can resist?! I've also been stitching. I decided to work on Wes's eagle every other week, with a week of something different in between. Last week I worked on Sweet Treat (the hummingbirds), and on the weekend I started a little gift I'm making for a friend who is moving. I'll just make it into a small pillow or magnet. This week I started back on the eagle, and have I ever been frustrated with that thing! The mistake I made was to count over to a new section instead of continuing from a previous section. The result is that I have a whole portion of the pattern that has to be pulled out and redone, but I'm only doing it as I stitch over to that section that I counted over to (sorry if that doesn't make sense!). So that whole portion looks a mess right now. I'll take pictures of my latest progress (or lack thereof) as I can next week. I've also tried to stitch in the afternoon a bit to see if the extra light will make things easier. The light in the house just isn't bright enough to stitch the more intricate pattern for the eagle. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the age of my eyes!

I popped into Wal Mart last night and saw that they have some of the same cross stitch supplies that Michael's does for about half the price. For those particular items, I'll buy at Wal Mart. I've been looking for a needlework shop nearby. I thought for sure there'd be one in North Vancouver, but so far I can't find any. The closest is in Surrey, about 30 minutes away. One day when I have plenty of spare time (!) I'll run down to Surrey and take a peek.

I almost forgot what else I did this week! I did a Mystery Shop. Mystery shopping is something I did in Ft. Worth and really enjoyed. As a mystery shopper, you go into a business such as a store or restaurant as a regular customer, conduct a business transaction (which the company instructs you about), and evaluate the service and appearance of the business and its employees. In Ft. Worth I got to shop at several restaurants, a high-end furniture store, and a bank. The pay is not enough to support yourself as a full-time job, but it gives you a little mad money. Usually the company will reimburse any purchase you make, plus pay you a small amount for making the shop. I shopped for Feedback Plus, Inc., in Ft. Worth, and they serve this area also. I rejoined them here about a year ago, but many of the shops they were sending me were in Ft. Worth, which is my alternate address with them. I wasn't paying much attention to their e-mails because of that, but yesterday I decided to see what the latest update was. The shop was for Vancouver! So I took it. It was fun to "shop" again, but this one was in downtown Vancouver and it was a huge hassle to find parking. I hope I'll be offered some more shops - Wes would like to get a restaurant again! LOL

I should go now. It's 8:00 and I still need to make a dessert for tomorrow. I'm procrastinating because I don't feel like baking a cake today. Funny how we'll let our feelings dictate what we decide to do instead of just doing what needs to be done right away! So I'm off to bake a cake.


  1. Thanks for catching us all up! And for all the helpful tips you include. I live in New York city and have to travel to Long Island to get to Walmart....but it's worth it! I like cross-stitching myself. "Got it on the cake" too!! God is good. Have a blessed Sunday.

  2. Susan, you're much more talented than you've let us know about in the past! Writing articles and mystery shopping! Wow!

    I would love to be a mystery shopper. I think I've heard Crystal mention it on her blog, too.

    I finally got a chancee to really check out the x-stitching site you recommended. Very neat! I LOVED all her gardening and birdhouse collector blinking signs on her sidebar. I wrote her and asked how I could do that! :)

    Hope you have a good Sunday!

  3. Susan....I AM a new blogger, but....I recommended you with some other sites (hope ya don't mind) on my blog for today!! I am saved 39 years and hope for the few posts (if you have the time), you won't mind so much?! Should have asked you first, but I just got so excited in this arena!

  4. oops....that should read 29 YEARS...won't line up when I eventually give my testimony!!!! Oh well!! I'm 44, NOT 54!!!

    Decaf could be the culprit(wink).

  5. Wow! What an exciting week!!!
    I'll have to check into that mystery shopping. :)

  6. Hi, Susan! I think that's wonderful the ways God has provided for your family! Blessings to you!

  7. I checked the feedback plus out, no shoppers needed in Florida! :(
    I had once looked into it, but the company I had contacted wanted money upfront to join them.....
    made me a littls suspicious


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