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24 July 2016

New starts

I could not wait to start something new this week. I actually waited til Saturday night, though. Went to my LNS and chose fabric and specialty threads for a few projects, but chose to start one I had in my stash. 

I did get fabric for L&L Little Wings. I realize in all my stitching life (27 years at this point), I've never done one. A Mirabilia and a Told in A Garden, but no L&L. This one looks like a romantic version of DD and I, so it was a good one for me to do. My progress has been steady.

The other one is an old design, Rabbits in the Arbor. I got it from a giveaway bin somewhere, all kitted up with most of the charms, the silks and the fabrics. I love how it looks, it's just a very tricky chart to work with. Instead of the blocks representing a stitch, they represent a thread. Its so counter everything that i know as a stitcher and different from other band samplers, which I love. I am relying on the cover photo to get me through. It's my weekend project and I work on Little Wings during the weekdays.

I came to another decision. I have a bunch of small designs and kits I have accumulated. Since I am trying to focus on working on stuff I have and I know a new baby won't leave me a lot of time to stitch large things, I think I am going to focus on 2017 as a year to stitch smalls and finish things.  That way, I can make the most of my stitching time.  Somehow, I have this vague recollection of picking up a needle for the first time the day after DD turned 1; I know this can not be true,  but it feels like that.  But we'll see.

Anyway, I hope everyone is making their way through this very hot weekend. Last night, I came home by 9 from work and was asleep by 9:45. And slept til 730 this morning. The last week or so, I have had more energy, so sleeping that long isn't normal, but I needed it, I guess. I drank a lot of water today, because my office A/C does not work, so it wasn't bad, but I still stuck to the chair. UGHHH. Supposed to be very hot tomorrow. They are calling for a thunderstorm: hopefully, it breaks the weather. If not, more water!

09 July 2016

End of Stash and Start Restraint

This week finishes my six-month participation in the Stash and Start Restraint challenge from Cross Stitch and Discuss. I started out with 80 or so UFOs and WIPs (mostly UFOs). In 6 months, I finished 19 of them.

2016 finishes
This should link you to my finish album on Facebook, even if you don't do Facebook. If not, let me know and I'll update it.

 I am pretty proud that I got so many projects finished in so short a time, but it was also pretty draining.  I have realized I don't like being restricted. Having all my kitted-up projects around and not being able to start them (the challenge involved only stitching things previously started) was frustrating. I like having the option to start new. What I did learn on a positive level is that I would rather stitch than shop. I used to prefer shopping and acquiring new things, but I have done an 180 degree shift in that regard in everything. And its helped immensely. Now, I just want to buy things when I want to stitch them. And only when I plan on starting to stitch them.

In other news, our family is expanding again. We found out a few months ago I am expecting our second child. It was a total surprise, but a very welcome one as we have been wanting another child for a few years now. We do know it's a boy--advances since 2012 include the ability to isolate the baby's DNA in my blood and tell, not only his risk for genetic disease, but also his gender. DD is still holding out hope he will be a girl, but she does love him and sings to him. He is due at Christmas; I did get diagnosed with gestational diabetes again, so he may come early. Which is fine--I am already mourning the loss of stuffing and cranberry salad at Thanksgiving, i don't want to do it at Christmas as well. LOL

So that is all that is going on here. I am planning a trip to my LNS next Saturday with all intentions of kitting up (and starting) Salem Remembered. I have grand plans of framing it and two of the Salem Sisters charts together for Halloween. I am not going to use the recommended fabric or threads for it though. It calls for 40 count and I did 2 40 count projects this year. not doing 3. Sorry.

Hope you are having a fabulous July.

10 May 2016

Finish #13 for the year

Birdsong 1, by Prairie Schooler. I started this while pregnant, and just got overwhelmed by the 40 count. Y'all that work on that count, I bow to you. I determined to finish it and did. It felt quite satisfying to put the threads in the box after this one. I wanted to do the companion, Birdsong 2, on 40 count. Not happening. I just won't hang them together!

23 April 2016

Latest finish

Another finish! I am pretty impressed with myself this month. In addition to this -I don't know of sweetly Gothic is the right word, but it reminds me so of those late afternoons right before Halloween, so it is wondrously lovely to me--lovely finish, I completed "The Gift", by BlackBerry Lane. I have backing fabric picked out for that one and am just waiting for maybe next week to finish it.  I also got two pages done on "In My Daughter's Eyes". I only have four more to go.  I am hoping to get those done before the end of the year, but they won't be as quick to do.

I also decided to give up the new job. I have 9 weeks service in,  but it just has been too much. I have worked harder for that paycheck than any other job ever, and it's a lot of work for the money. I like our customers mainly (except when they leave random crap in our department), I like most of my coworkers, but I just can't do the level of exhaustion I deal with. So I an getting more hours at the theatre and whatever the difference is, I put my faith that we'll get through. My manager is understanding, he said I always would have a job if I needed one. So that makes me feel like I accomplished something.

Anyway that is all from here. I hope your weekend is going well

31 March 2016

Soldiering on

I know that it's been a few weeks. I have been busy at work. Still doing the extra part time gig. At least for now. But 4 days a week is a lot of time out of my schedule. Next week, it goes to 3 days, but I'm going to use that evening that I am not working to work on the house we're moving into. Another project for me (because I don't have enough things to juggle, right), but, it's what is best for our family, so it's what I have to do. After finishing "Santa's Pets," I thought I would spend March doing smalls. I did manage to get that little Just Nan finished, but then I picked up PS Bunnies and that took most of the month to finish. I've been working on that project for 3 years, but I didn't enjoy it. And I don't know if I would have finished it had I not set one of my goals for the year to be to make an effort to finish projects that I don't enjoy as much or are challenging. And some of the colors on this one are . . . challenging. I have all the supplies to finish the designs into ornaments, I just haven't had the chance this week to do the washing and finishing (but I did paint the backing, so I am trying! I won't post a picture of the full project til it's done, but this is a sample of the end result:
Bunnies
Prairie Schooler
called for threads on 14 count black Charles Craft Aida
 
 
They are very sweet little guys. And they will be very cute next year for Easter. And I feel quite accomplished that I finished all 9 designs. I don't know why I didn't finish these sooner. I like Prairie Schooler (anyone else seriously bummed they went out of business? I will miss them) I like bunnies. I just . . . that red was not spring-y to me. and it felt like I was doing the same design over and over. 8 times. And maybe knowing that I have 9 things to finish now, that probably scared me. Anyway, it's very cute.
And my latest WIP:
 
The Gift
2011 JCS ornament issue
Blackberry Designs
stitched with called-for threads on 16 count aida
 
 
 
I have been itching to stitch this design since the magazine came out. I love it--it's the design of the sweet lamb. Very shaded. The original is supposed to be stitched over one on fine linen. As you can tell, I am not doing it that way. Mine is on 16 count linen. I agonized over this, but I don't think I see that well and I don't think I would enjoy this project if I was having to stitch it so tiny. I think this will work out. It's going to be a big ornament, but that's OK. You need something to fill the holes or for the bottom of the tree and it's so pretty.  I just want to have this in a form I can use.
 
I also wanted to share this picture. 


We went to the National Zoo on Saturday. My brother has been wanting to take my daughter since she was tiny, but he wanted to wait til she was potty-trained. And he knows I have been having a rough patch, so we all piled into my mom's car and went downtown. We discussed the subway, but due to terrorism and the fact that my mom is 81 and my daughter is 3 and there is a long walk between metro stops when you are 81 or 3, it was better to drive. And parking is not bad--we parked at the Marriott Wardley Park, 2 blocks away--and it was affordable, but there is an app, Parking Panda, that also gets you  discount parking. (In case anyone is visiting DC and is interested)

Left-brain and I took Kay-kay back in August to see "Bamboo"--her name for Bao Bao. Bei Bei had just been born, so we couldn't see him, but he recently made his public appearance, so we had to see him. Although I don't know if you call this seeing him. He was in a tree, sleeping. Apparently he does this a lot. He falls out every so often, but it doesn't hurt him because of his fur. He went inside, and my mom waited in a long line to see him. She was in paradise. We, however, chose to go look at other animals, but it was a nice day.

So that is all for now. I hope everyone had a nice Easter!

11 March 2016

Small stitches

I have been working on some little stitches since I finished Santa.  They were both kitted up on the same day, right after DD was born, and I want to get them finished. The black is PS bunnies, which I would like to get done for Easter, and the other one is "In My Daughter's Eyes".  I envision the bunnies mounted on wooden egg shapes, but I will have to see if AC MOORE carries those. 

06 March 2016

A small finish

Frost is on the Pumpkin
Just Nan
stitched with called-for threads on unknown fabric with rainbow blending filament
 
 
 
Yesterday was stitching group day. It was also my first real day off in 2 weeks--I started a new job on February 20th, and have been working that and the two existing jobs every day since.  I have been very stressed out--coming home at midnight means I don't get to sleep til 1AM and then get back up at 6 to start the day means I am running on caffeine and determination. I don't know how long I will keep this job, though. When I took it, I told them one weekend day per week and, low and behold, I am scheduled both weekend days for the upcoming week. I am going to try to resolve it today, but I don't know. . . If it has to be, then I will work until I find something else, or get fed up. I don't mind working, I do mind working 70 hours a week when I explained I couldn't do that.
 
Anyway, I started this project in 2015. This picture shows how quickly I abandoned it:
 


 
 
I think the store didn't have 970 when I went and I couldn't find it in my stash, so I gave up and put it away. And then, yesterday morning, stressed out over this new job, I pulled it out and decided I was finishing it. And I did. It took next to no time. Kay-kay helped pull a few stitches.  I know I will finish it as an ornament, but not sure when it will be appropriate to display it. The snowman kind of throws it into a weird place, since I don't have Halloween snowmen, but I guess I could always start  with this.
 
 
Hoping everyone is having  great weekend so far.  And that this week brings some progress!

I do my thing and you do yours. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, and you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you and I am I, and if by chance we find each other, then it is beautiful. If not, it can’t be helped--Frederick Perls