Monday, January 28, 2013

1st WIPocalypse of 2013

For the past month I've had all sorts of time for stitching. As expected though, as soon as I got the go ahead to drive, I've had much less time at home for myself. I was really hoping not to resume the running quite as bad as before, but so many things got neglected during my recovery that I've had lots to catch up with. I think I'm about done with the majority of it now and so I'm really going to make an effort not to leave the house unless I really have to:)

I do have some stitching to show off...

You've seen this one several times, but it's just almost done. This is 'Fishing' by Bobbie G Designs. I just have a bit of the decking, railing and water to do and a bunch of outlining. Hoping to get this one done and mailed out by next week.
This is Live Laugh Love by La D Da. I'm doing this with 4 other stitching ladies as a round robin. This is my part of my project, ready to send it off to the next stitcher!!!
And since I put stitching Christmas Ornies as part of my 52 in 52 goals, I decided to join another group!! Stitching Lotus is running an Ornament SAL this year, so I'm going to try and keep up with that. This will be my first ornie of the year - Joy of the Snowflake by Little by Little Design Co. It can be found in the 2011 ornie issue of Just Cross Stitch. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Ankle Update

I have finally been freed from the bonds of the huge black boot and may now leave the house on my own free will!!! (How was that for dramatic? :)

Okay, well I did get the big black boot off and I am now able to drive. I went to the Dr yesterday and the fracture/brake hardly shows on the x-rays now - actually I couldn't see it this time, but the Dr. says it's healing really well. He almost had me stay in the boot for another couple weeks, but thankfully changed his mind. I am in a smaller brace though. The smaller brace gives me more mobility, but I'm not feeling as secure with it yet, so I'm going a bit slowly again. Thankfully the foot/ankle has limbered up a lot since switching braces yesterday, so it is all feeling much better.

So back to doing the shopping and errands and such. Our dd says it's past time to get her signed up for gymnastics and swim and anything else we can find to sign her up for!!! LOL I have really enjoyed life being nice and quiet, but I guess that isn't to be anymore:) Well, it was nice and quiet for me. Dh has been running non-stop with over-time at work and shuffling dd around and doing the shopping/errands as well. He doesn't really like to be near that busy either, so I guess it's time for me to resume doing my part.

I've been getting lots of stitching and crocheting done here lately, and am hoping to keep up with all that. I've even been asked to write up a couple recommendations for 2 members of our 4-H club trying for a scholarship. These two really deserve a good chance at this and I'm a bit nervous since I've never done anything like this before. Hoping to do a good job for them!!

That is all for now. I need to go an actually do a couple of those things I talked about:) I will be back in a day or two with my WIPocalypse report. I have quite a bit of progress to show off!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Thank You So Much!!!

I just wanted to take a minute and thank everyone who stopped by this weekend for the Grow Your Blog Party. It was so much fun to go and visit so many other blogs and to read what so many had to say about mine!!! I still haven't gotten through nearly all of the blogs that were posted on Vicki's blog. I'm still working through them.

I had several people interested in our living in the country so I'm hoping to post a few more things in the future having to do with life out here. It just seems normal to me now, but I remember living in town several years back and dreaming of having a quiet place all to our own.

Also lots who commented on the stitching and other crafts. Of course I will continue to post on these things, but I would like to try and have a bit more on the 'other' crafts that I usually put off in order to stitch more:) Hopefully I'll be able to make time to do a bit more quilting and sewing as well as learning to knit.

You are still welcome to leave a comment on my Grow Your Blog Post and be entered into my giveaway. I will be drawing a name for this on Feb 1st. I'm so excited about the giveaway (my first!!!), and I'm having lots of fun putting things together for it:)

Again, I want to thank everyone who visited and for all those who left such sweet comments on my blog!!

January IHSW

I'm running a bit late getting this posted today. It's been kind of a busy weekend, but I did manage to get quite a bit done on this piece. I'm pretty excited about it too. Hoping to finish this one by the end of the month and then get started on the next LoveQuilt block which will be a tractor for a little boy who loves all things farm related:)

This is where I was last Friday. I didn't get any stitching time on Friday as my mother-in-law came up to take my dd and I into town for some errands and activities. We left here at 8:00 in the morning and didn't get back until after 4:00. My leg was just worn out by then!!!
And this is where I am as of this evening. I counted today as part of the 'weekend' since my hubby had the day off and we took school off today as well. Tomorrow is back to our regular schedule for all of us, still hopeful to get a bit of stitching time in:)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Grow Your Blog Party ~~~ And a GIVEAWAY!!!

So excited about this blog party!! First and foremost I will explain a bit about how this works. Vicky at 2 Bags Full is hosting this party and it is kind of like an 'open house', but on the web. She has (will have as of midnight 1/19/13) a list on her blog of all the bloggers involved. And I am sure she is as surprised as I am that over 400 bloggers replied to this party!!! Then you can go to as many blogs as you like and get to know some really great people. Some of them will even have giveaways to enter in for as well (and so do I, so keep reading!!). Follow the ones you like, if you want, and have lots of fun in the process, what's better than that?
So for this post we are to tell a bit about our self and our blog. Since I haven't done that for a while, and I know I have readers who haven't been reading here for long, I think this is a great idea.
Here is some random info on me and my blog...
~ I married my high school sweety. I was 14 when we met and we dated for 5 years before we got married (gave me time to finish high school and for him to finished college). We've been married now for almost 16 years. That is 21 years with the same guy!!! :0)
~We have one daughter who is homeschooled. We always wanted more children, but it didn't work out that way. We love her to pieces, even when her teenager-ways drive us nuts!!
~We live in the country and our 'homestead' consists of 10 acres, a barn/shop, lots of cats, 2 dogs, a rabbit, a guinea pig and some fish. We've had cows, chickens and goats in the past and our daughter begs for a horse almost every single day!! Thankfully her friend has horses and she gets her horse fix over there!!
~I love to cross stitch. Mostly this is what my blog consists of. I also love to crochet and am hoping to learn more so I can do more than just square blocks!!! I would also like to learn to knit this year. I do dabble a bit in other sewing and crafts like quilting, card making and sewing clothes (though not much) and will share those things on my blog as well.
~For the last year or so, my heart has really been pulled towards stitching and crafting for charity causes. The one I'm most involved with at this time is Love Quilts. I do post quite often about this since that is what takes up most of my stitching time.
~I am motivated by challenges, SALs (stitch-a-longs), and deadlines. I love making lists and checking things off. I really only get things done if others know that I should be working on something:) So I have a couple pages at the top of my blog for goals, links to SALs, and challenges that I'm involved in. If you decide to read my blog in the future, please feel free to ask how things are going and give me a little kick in the pants to make sure I'm staying on track!!! :0) And if you know of any other groups I should be involved in, let me know!!
Okay, so this is a little about me. I do blog about family things and just random things at times too, but this gives you an idea of how things roll here in my little corner.
This is the fun part!!! I have given lots of thought to what I wanted to do as a giveaway and I've decided that it will have a Valentine's theme. I'm not going to show you all of what it is, but I will say that there is lots of pink and red and hearts involved!!! And, of course, a bit of it will be stitched, because what is a stitchy blog without some stitched up goodies?!?!? So, do you want to see a preview?
Preview of giveaway
Some pretty fun Valentine things always makes me smile!! :)
Some rules for this giveaway...
~You need to leave a comment on this post. You need to make sure I have some way of contacting you if you should win. You can be an anonymous user so long as I can get back with you.
~Anyone, anywhere can enter. You don't need to become a follower of my blog (though I would love it if you did, of course:), and you don't have to be a blogger.
~I will announce the winner on Feb 1st and send out a couple of reminders between now and then.
I think that does it. This is my first giveaway as well, so I'm super excited to be able to do it!!!
Good luck to everyone who enters. Maybe I'll be seeing you on your blog tomorrow too:) 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Upcoming IHSW

Just a heads up that the first IHSW of the year is this weekend!!! It's really needed here as I've kind of been lax in my stitching time here lately. Been spending my extra time playing on the internet instead of getting the stitching done;0) Oops!! Well, this should help get me back on track.
If you want to join in as well, use the link above and read the 'rules' and sign up to join in!!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Making new friends - Blog Party

Vicki over at 2 Bags Full is having a Grow Your Blog party (isn't the button above the cutest ever!?!?). It will be a time to learn about new blogs that you might like to start following and to have others learn about and start reading your blog. Kind of like an open house right here on the web. Several bloggers plan to have giveaways as well, so even if you like how your blog is and you don't want to follow anyone else, you can still have fun and enter to win prizes!!! Lots of fun to be had by all:)
If you are interested, go to 2 Bags Full, this will send you to the sign up page (you need to sign up by tomorrow - sorry I got in on this late), and tell you all the details of what to do. I can't wait, this is exactly what I wanted to do with my blog this year, so it's just perfect for me!!!
I will be posting a bit about myself and my blog as an introduction on Jan 18/19 (as will all the other bloggers joining in on this) and will announce at that time the giveaway I will be having. Anyone will be able to win, whether or not you have a blog, you don't have to follow my blog to be entered, so come back on Saturday and at least enter to win. I'm still thinking on what it'll be. Something for Valentine's Day, maybe? :)

January YOTA

I joined one more stitch-a-long. :0) I'd tell you that it's the last one I was going to join, but I just don't know if that's true or not. HA!! Actually this one confused me at first. It is called YOTA - which stands for Year Of The Acronym, and I couldn't figure out what was meant by that. When I finally took the time to read more into it, I realized the author of Pull the Other Thread was being funny and instead of calling this one a 'UFO SAL' she shortened it to YOTA. :) Cleaver!! The idea is to grab a project from your pile - a UFO project- and work on it for at least the first Saturday of the month (she had us do the second Saturday this month to make sure everyone had time to be ready), and then post your progress.
Okay, so how is this one different from WIPocalypse? Well for WIPocalypse I've been just working on whatever I have in my hands at the time and posting progress pics on the full moon. This one is to be UFOs which I've always seen as one and the same as my WIPs (WIPs - works in progress, UFOs unfinished object). I just saw all of my projects as works in progress, but in reality, most of them haven't been touched in quite a long time (some more than a year). So I guess that qualifies them as UFOs!!!
I decided, then, for this SAL (stitch-a-long, if you haven't caught on yet:), to grab a true UFO, one that has been sitting in my basket for a really long time, but that I still love and want to see finished at some point. I also wanted this to be a larger project, one that I wouldn't just pick up unless I felt I had a lot of time, which I may never have!! I will probably only be able to stitch on this for the one day a month, as I have other projects that need to get done on a time-line. My inspiration for the project I choose actually came from a Christmas gift I received from my in-laws. My mother-in-law always gives calendars as gifts and she is always trying to find just the right one for everyone. My daughter always receives a cat calendar, my hubby, a tractor one, and mine is usually garden themed. This year I was admiring a pocket calendar that my mother-in-law had that had Marjolein Bastin art work as it's theme. I love her nature art and so this is the calendar that I received this year. I made those 3 'bookmarks' by cutting out the preview pics from the back of this cover. 
The calendar had me thinking about a project I had started a couple years ago, also from Marjolein Bastin, called The Four Seasons. I'm doing this project using 28ct white evenweave, stitching over one with one strand of thread. That needle is a size 26 petite, to give you an idea of the size. So this is where I ended a year or two ago, the last time I held this in my hands.

And this was after a quiet afternoon alone at home with nothing to do but to watch a couple girly movies and stitch - okay, maybe the house should have been cleaned, and the laundry didn't get done, but I did get all the dishes done. :)

This pic actually shows the colors right, the other pic was taken in the evening, and my lamp light makes everything darker.
I'm really looking forward to stitching on this again next month and seeing how far I can get with it by the end of the year.

Friday, January 11, 2013

January TUSAL

WooHoo!! The first Tusal of the year!!! And I have been busy stitching, so I have some to show off:)  Okay, so for those who don't know what Tusal is... It stands for Totally Useless Stitch A Long, and it is totally useless, but it is fun anyway. What you do is gather all your bits of floss and fabric and whatever little bits of this and that from your stitching projects and put them in some kind of container to accumulate all year long. Then on the new moon of each month, you post to your blog how much you have for that month.

I'm planning to use what I gathered last year as stuffing for some kind of finishing, maybe a Christmas ornie or something.

SO, here is what I've gather since the beginning of this year. Most of it has come from the project that it is sitting on. Not too bad for only 11 days worth:)

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Week 1 Update of 52 in 52

I can't believe the first week of 2013 has already come and gone. You'd think since I've pretty much been stuck at home for a few weeks now that time would just crawl on by. Actually I kind-of like being home so much, dd isn't as happy about it:) Yesterday the Dr said things are looking good and to come back in a couple weeks with my other shoe!!! So I'm hoping that means that I'll at least be in a smaller brace, maybe no brace at all. Either way it should mean that I will be able to drive again. That is such happy news to our daughter. She is ready to resume her crazy schedule:)

Okay, so I've done some of my 52 in 52 really well, but on a few things I'm already behind.

We'll go down the list...

Kitchen/food goals

We tried a new recipe for smoke beef roast (I'll update the top page with a link to the recipe as soon as I can find it:). This was the best beef roast we have ever had!!!

I have also tried a new-to-me brand of chocolate. It is from Green and Black's and can be found at grocery stores like Walmart. I got 85% and the mint, but have only tried the dark so far. I need more time before I can comment. I'm not a dark chocolate kind of girl, and this was intense for me, so I'm just not sure how I feel about it.

Charity/Community Service

Nothing completed on this section. I am working on 2 toddler blankets and on a LoveQuilt block.


I got one of my older cross stitch projects completed.
I've started on a round robin project and will be doing the first mailing off at the end of this month.
I signed up for a stitchy exchange.
So I did get a bit done with this one:)

Health and Wellness

Umm, well, walking and biking are kind of out right now:) I am trying, by way of diet to lose a couple pounds that would get me back down to where I was after I lost that 10lbs last year:) Then I will start on the 30lbs I want to lose this year!!

Art and Photography

Nope, nothing here either. Hoping to draw a little bit today or Friday as the weather has warmed up a bit and I may talk my daughter into going outside to do some drawing as well:)


I am almost finished with my first 'for fun' book and plan to start an 'educational' book afterwards about Mediterranean Eating. I also started a chronological reading plan of the Bible and have done well with that.

Nothing yet of 'Family Fun' or 'Christmas Time'.

There is a couple of goals that I was to do weekly with a total of 52 by the end of the year - like with the drawing and photos of our daughter. I will allow myself to make up for those weeks that I miss so long as the total does in-fact equal 52 in the end. Hopefully I'll be able to update this each week so long as I have enough progress:)

So did anyone else set goals for themselves this year? How are you doing with your goals?

Monday, January 7, 2013

Even more crocheting:)

I'm just going to blame this one on my friend, LOL!! My hubby took me to visit her last week since I'm still not able to drive and she asked if I had any crocheting going that I could bring. Well, I had left the boy blanket at my in-laws over Christmas and still hadn't gone to get it back. This is the friend that is doing respite care, so I asked if they had any little girls that would like a blanket and she had just the little girl in mind:) So my ever patient hubby took me to Hobby Lobby before taking me to her house (did I mention she lives an hour away? :). I got some pink, light blue and white cotton yarn ('I Love This Cotton' is my favorite brand right now and it was on sale!!).

My friend had the cutest extra little girl at her house the day I visited (not the same girl who will likely get this blanket), so the crocheting went slowly:) But I did get some done on it and have been working on it off and on ever since.

I've also been working on 'Fishing' for LoveQuilts and I have started 'Live Laugh Love' from La D Da as a round robin that I'm really excited about. So I'm just going from one project to another trying to get a bit done on each every day.  Okay, so I guess breaking my ankle has had some good points too!! :)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

First Stitchy Finish of the year!!!

I had hoped to have this done a couple days ago and to have my first finish of the year on Jan 1, but I guess this is close enough:)

This is 'Oh Christmas Tree' from With Thy Needle and Thread. As you may or may not be able to see, it will be finished off as a stuffed snowman with this design as the pouch. The pouch can then be filled with greenery, candy canes, sheet music, or whatever screams 'holidays' to you.

I really should have put something in my 52 in 52 project for sewing up, framing or other 'finishing' options for the stitchy projects that I finish stitching this year:) Well, I guess I'll still have to try and do some of that as well.

Well, this means that I can 'bank' my first $3.00 towards new purchases, as part of the 2013 Stash Diet. I will keep that page (top of this page) updated with a list of finishes and how much money I have banked towards new purchases!! Since I wasn't able to use my gift cards for our LNS before the New Year, I will use that once I earn enough from finishing current projects. I'm hoping that by the time my birthday rolls around (May) that I'll have earned enough to spend the full amount on my gift cards ($80), but that will mean lots of projects finished!!!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A New Year with new goals

Really, time must be going by faster as I get older. Even my 13 year old daughter said it feels the same to her. She says she wants to grow up, but she doesn't want her childhood to go away so fast. Smart girl!!

It sure feels weird to not be participating in the Crazy January 15 project challenge. I've done that for the past 2 years and it is a lot of fun, but I have so many projects left over from the past couple years, that I felt that I really had no business doing it again. At least not until I found some order with the WIPs and UFOs that I currently have to work on.

But I did manage to find several different challenges and SALs to keep me busy this year and to give me plenty to blog about.

This year I will participate in...

TUSAL - I'm doing this again since it really did turn out to be fun:) Lots of pretty colors all collected in a jar just makes me happy.

WIPocalypse - Well, we survived through the Mayan prediction (really did anyone think this was real?), but we still have piles of projects to work on, so on to another year of really trying to get those WIPs done!!!

IHSW - This is a weekend dedicated to staying home and stitching!! Sounds like a dream come true, doesn't it? Don't have that luxury? (does anyone have that luxury?) That's okay, just stitch as much as you can and blog about it the following Monday (even if it's only a few stitches).

52 in 52 - I really love this idea. I posted about this a couple weeks ago, but I have made a few changes since. I have a page dedicated to this project with a tab at the top of this page. I'll blog about it here and there, but for a total accumulation of my progress I will keep that page updated all year long.

Stash diet - The goal here is to just stitch from the stash you already have. You can set further goals and 'prizes' for yourself such as I will allow myself $3.00 worth of new stash for every chart I finish. Other are doing it differently. Not sure how I'll do on this one. I thought I would go binge shopping before the beginning of the year and get some of it out of my system before starting the 'diet', but after breaking my ankle, I wasn't able to visit the LNS. I did buy one project on-line that is for a round robin I'm doing with a few other stitchy ladies.

Because my 52 in 52 project incorporates so many differing kinds of goals, I'm not doing any other aspirations/resolutions. I'm really excited to see the progress I can make on all these challenges. Please feel free to question my progress and cheer me on from time to time (like mid May when I tend to try hiding in a hole for the rest of the summer:).

What challenges and/or goals are you planning to work towards this year?