Sharing my life and love of cross stitch. Thoughts about this and that.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Witches and Goblins and Ghosts; OH MY, The Potential Liability!

I haven't participated at all in Halloween activities in at least 15 years, despite the fact I did a couple of designs recently. 1) My DD, my costumed TrickRTreeterGreeter, moved out 21 years ago; 2) There have never been many children come round - last year only a couple were out and about; 3 & 4) A whine:  I'm allergic to chocolate and can't eat sugar so having mostly full bags of leftovers around is just too tempting to resist; and 5) Premises liability issues - I have cracks in my driveway that even I trip over on occasion - read ## below if you are interested or for your horrified amusement. [Being a lawyer often takes the fun out of otherwise entertaining activities.] Sad to say, but I park my car at an angle to block the drive, don't turn on my porch light and keep the inside dark as possible. Or I find somewhere else to be for a while. Of course, had I young children or a grandchild, I would get back into the ghoulish swing of things - elsewhere.

OTOH, My DD goes beyond the ghostly pale when it comes to Halloween. She has had
the occasional a costume party with decorated house, and for years has set up increasingly more elaborate spooky displays in her front yard. This year they added dead groom sitting next to dead bride in coffin on the porch, created more spider webs to drape from eaves and trees, upgraded the graves scattered throughout the yard, and likely added more scary noises/music, etc. The last 2 years she and her DH were Zombie Wilma and Fred. This year it's Mr. & Mrs. Frankenstein - full make-up, of course. The resultant increased vehicular traffic has encouraged other neighbors to join in.

## Promised really spooky legal stuff[Appears to me that when it comes to Halloween, the level of  duty and responsibility owed to Trick-or-Treaters falls somewhere between the highest and this slightly
lesser level. We call this, appropriately, a "grey area."]  A person (that's them) who enters the premises (your yard and/or abode) with the landowner's (that's you) express or implied permission (you decorated your house/yard, turned on your porch light, sent out an invitation, didn't stop a crasher at the door, etc.) for his or her own purposes (to acquire candy, free booze, etc.) rather than the landowner's benefit (unless you are deliberately luring them there a la Hanzel and Gretl or Hannibal Lecter), such as a social guest (the fairy, the pirate, the sexy French maid, et al), is called a licensee. An owner or occupier of land (you) has a duty to warn a licensee (them) of a dangerous condition that creates an unreasonable risk of harm (they might hurt themselves) if it is known (or should  have been known) to the owner or occupier (you again) and not likely to be discovered (seen, spotted, knew in advance about) by the licensee (them again). (One assumes this means you must need bull horn specific warnings from the porch before they step in your yard or put up brightly lit fluorescent yellow or orange signs in both pictographs and text, or include a Caveat, in bold at least 10 point typeface, in your invitation.) There is no duty to inspect for defects or to fix known defects. (That's good news, but I wouldn't bet my life savings on it, and you aren't completely off the hook since you can still get sued, which costs you $$, even if you win ...) The owner or occupier (ah ... yes, still  you) does have a duty to exercise reasonable care in the conduct of active operations (encouraging said fairy, pirate, sexy French maid, et al to come into your yard and up to the door and perhaps inside for a party, etc) to protect a licensee (yes, still them)  [whom you] know is on the property. (You don't have to go out looking - but I wouldn't depend on that actually "knew" defense working for Halloween when that "should have known" is hanging out there.) HOWEVER, (and this is for real, well so is the above but this adds another aged witchy wrinkle), an even higher duty of discovery and notice of hazards and care is due to children who can't fully recognize nor appreciate a possible a hazard or dangerous situation, and then there are those DWI Dram Shop laws that can sometimes be extended to hold the individual supplying the booze liable. And for the record: NO, my DD doesn't listen to me either.

Nonetheless, I sincerely wish those of you who do enjoy getting into costume and decorating in black, orange and purple, a wonderful Bubble, Bubble Toil & Trouble Day!

Here's a FUN and generic "Trick-or-Treat  Liability and Indemnification Agreement" to possibly make sure the hand and mouth you put the candy in doesn't come back to bite you. Imagine the screams of horror and the jagged tooth rictus on your teen and adult visitors' faces when you won't let them snatch at the goodies or through your door until and unless they sign it - in advance. Hey, Halloween might be still be fun after all!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Interesting Links to Photos of Different types of Biscornus / Bicorni?

Posts on 123MB often send me off in new directions. Here's a few links to photos of different types of biscornu and tutorials. This post will be copied and posted to the OTHER LINKS page. Though I designed one, I admit still haven't stitched one myself.


Google for additional photos, charts and tutorials.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Brother Gets His Pick of Mom's Humpties

My little brother, Jim
Picked up Jim at DFW this morning with Dad and visited briefly. When we had gotten back to Dad's house, I spread Mom's Humpty Dumpties across the bed for him to choose from (see previous blog posts). He remembered them being bigger. I told him indeed they used to be at least half again as big and stuffed a lot full and didn't know why or when Mom had started making them smaller. I've promised myself I'll make some that are bigger and stuffedier, more like my grandmother made them when I was little. Without any prospect of grandchildren and the great-neices and nephews already supplied and having outgrown them, I don't know for whom, but I may just for myself. We'll see. But for now, Jim has his pick between 9 of Mom's Humpties.

Because he's only home usually once a year, his schedule of visiting and family and friends is crowded - particularly this time since his visit coincides with the Alumni Jazz Band Concert at UT Arlington - the first time he'll be participating since he graduated and moved to LA in 1981.  My sister has already taken off tomorrow so she can spend the day with him, and he has other activities already planned as well. He'd suggested we get together tonight, but having overheard the plans and after Jim konked out from exhaustion, Dad commented to me that everyone was going to get to visit with Jim except him - despite the fact Jim is staying with Dad and they'll likely spend late into the night talking. But Jim's the son and Dad is 87. He only gets to see him when Jim comes home as well.  So I told Dad to visit with Jim tonight instead, that Jim and I would find some other time to get together before he leaves. I hate that he lives so very far away, will never move back, and is so busy he rarely gets to stay more than a few days - and we're very lucky he does come to our back home to visit. It's not been "home" for him in 30 years. When he does, he has to decline performance and recording gigs as well as some quick-turnaround arranging jobs to do so. Because of his schedule, trying to visit him in LA is, therefore, just as problematic. Can you tell? I miss being around my little brother so very very much.

The UTA campus newspaper published a brief article about Jim and the concert yesterday.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Updated Freebie Links

Added a new Alphabets section and moved Breast Cancer and Charity Freebies to a separate page.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Assisted with Alzheimer's Walk

... as a radio volunteer, yesterday morning in Fort Worth's Trinity Park. The weather was perfect!. To read about the event and what I did, see my Adventures of an Emergency Management Volunteer blog. Since I'd been awake all night, when I got home I ate and went to bed, sleeping through the first 6 innings of the Rangers vs Tigers game.Rangers won! Woo-hooooo!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Still No Stitching; Dad & Brother Jim

It was brought to my attention that not all the Page tabs/links across the top of the posts were working. I found it necessary to move the PAGES list to the right column, but I much prefer it on top.

I keep THINKING about stitching. I have stitching I want or need to do: a long overdue square for a charity project (they graciously moved forward without me but I do intend to finish and send to be used for a future project), something for the new baby of a woman I do volunteer work with/for, etc.. I went so far as to look at my unfinished project, pick up a couple of loose floss bobbins and hold a needle a couple of times in the past couple of weeks, but haven't taken a single stitch since early July. I can't explain it.

I am feeling the loss of my Mother more and more keenly and deeply. I've had more tears and brief bursts of gut wrenching sobs in the past 2 or 3 weeks than in the previous 3 months. I can't explain it.

For the 4th time in the past 3 months something has inexplicably fallen: twice off the ledge in the bathroom into the sink, and twice off the counter on to the floor - each time shattering an empty vase I had sitting there. I wasn't even in the bathroom 3 of the 4 times and no where near what fell last night. If it's Mom, I suspect it's because she's really angry at me - she has good reason. Otherwise, I can't explain it.

Dad actually got on a plane and flew off to visit an old friend for a week. He's steadfastly refused to fly for the past 20 years, and from the manner in which he was way too quiet and shuffled into the terminal when I dropped him off, I seriously thought he was going change his mind - and hoped if he did it was before I got all the way home. When he got back after a visit that was more enjoyable than he expected, I suggested he think about a trip to Pasadena to visit my brother and wife. Dad's never been in the house they bought in 1999. I truly hope Jim can find a few free days where that can happen land Dad will do it.

Speaking of my brother, he'll be home again next weekend for a follow-up visit, to choose the Humpty Dumpty he wants to remember Mother by, and to play in UT Arlington's Jazz Band Alumni concert on the 23rd. When he called to tell the Chair he'd be there, he was asked "have you played your horn recently" - the need to ascertain if the former student has kept up his or her
chops and won't squeak an inopportune note. As soon as Jim started rattling off things he's done in just the past few weeks, such as the Kardashian wedding, the 2012 Emmy's Governor's Ball, being involved in arranging and recording new music to be piped in for your listening enjoyment at the Entrance and along Main Street in Disneylands around the world - just to name a representative few, the guy asked if he'd like to play a duet before the full band/orchestra came out. Sure! He bought his ticket home, then later the same day got a call to play a you'd-know-the-name gig the same weekend. As much as he would have liked to, he turned it down. Jim doesn't boast about himself unless specifically asked what he's been involved in, so forgive his big sister if she does a bit of boasting for him. I'm trying to get him to let me create a professional web page for him, but so far he's still mulling. He  leads a generally normal, pretty homebody but really hard working and interesting life. But most important of all, he's a really great brother! One of the organizations he works with. See Impulse. I think he also occasionally subs with some of the other groups as well.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

For charted pink ribbons and related freebies as well as other appropriate designs, 
click on the FREEBIE LINKS page.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

A Charitable Request

Albertson's is sponsoring a Community Partner's Program. Charitable organizations which receive the most votes will receive a grant for requested funds. If you've already noticed at the bottom of my Blog is a link to Airborne Angel Cadets of Texas, a group which collects or purchases basic supplies and sometimes goodies then mails "care" packages to US troops often stationed in the most remote and isolated locations in Iraq, Afghanistan and throughout the Middle East. 100% of donations are used for these purposes. Airborne Angel Cadets has requested a grant of $5,000 to help offset the costs of purchases and postage. You may vote up to 5 times a day from October 1 through October 15. If you should feel so inclined to help this very worthwhile organization, or just to check it out and read the letters from the recipients or requests for assistance, please visit the site to learn how.

On behalf of our service women and men deployed abroad, I thank you.