Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Blame it on the Olympics

I'm hopelessly addicted to the Olympics. There. I said it.

I've never really had an interest in watching in the past. But, for some reason, this year I can't stop watching. I'm watching sports that I can't identify, with names I can't pronounce (what in the world is 'repachage'??). Every single telecast. All day long. Since I work for a cable company, I have a TV in my office. I can't bring myself to turn on anything but the Olympics.  You'd think I had money riding on some of these events the way I'm all up on the edge of my couch (or desk chair) , cheering for people I can't identify, from countries I've never heard of, in events that I've never seen before. I need an intervention...

I tried turning some of that Olympic excitement into stitching mojo, but I just ended up kitting my HAED (All Hallow's Eve, #8 on the list) and watching it sit there next to me on the couch as if to say "I don't know why you bother. Tsk, Tsk". I did manage to pick it up for awhile on Sunday night, but only got in about 80 stitches. I told myself I wouldn't put it down until I finished the first line on the first chart page. Mission accomplished!!

And then I watched the whitewater canoe (or kayak?) quarterfinals. At 2 in the morning. God help me...

Friday, July 27, 2012

Thursday Stitch Therapy & Giveaway Loot!!

Do you ever find yourself sitting in your favorite easy chair/comfy spot/public place and thinking, over and over, "I'd rather be stitching"? That was me last night. I was sitting in my favorite spot on the couch, good shows were on TV, and my stitching bag was right next to me. Thisclose. Right freakin' there. And I couldn't bring myself to pick up a single needle. Not one....sigh.

I absolutely despise nights like that, but I haven't figured out what trigger I need to pull in order to whip my stitching motivation into overdrive. Well, I guess it's a good thing then that I ended up with more time to stitch on Tuesday and Wednesday than I thought I would have. So this week's edition of Thursday Stitch Therapy is actually a bit of a falsehood, since no stitching whatsoever actually took place on Thursday. The day wasn't a total loss, however, as I came home to this waiting for me in the mail: 

A Big THANK YOU! to Denise over at Riverside Stitching! I was so thrilled to receive her giveaway goodies along with a lovely hand-written card. Made my day! Can't wait to start stitching on the CCN :)

And now, on to my progress pics:

WWoG 7/19/12
WWoG 7/24/12 (Chart pg 1 DONE)!

WWoG 7/25/12
 As always, my apologies for never (ever) being able to get the same lighting twice. Especially the one on the upper left...what the heck happened there?! Ah, well, you get the idea. I'm hoping to have page 2 of this chart done by tomorrow, so I can put a some work in on Cabriolet.

Here's to a relaxing weekend and enjoying whatever it is that makes you happy!


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Family Getaway Update, Pt. 2 & Some Stitchy News

Phew!! We survived our weekend family getaway all in one piece and made it home safe and sound. Yesterday, Day 2 of the trip, proved a TON of fun! We took the kids to the zoo first thing in the morning and didn't leave there until after 4pm. We were all very tired, very fulfilled, and very h-o-t!! The heat index by 11am was 106...ugh. It didn't get any cooler, either. After we left the zoo and made the 3-hr drive home, we took care of some housekeeping responsibilities, hauled all of our stuff in from the car (it's amazing how much stuff is 'required' for a 2-day trip, lol), and sat down to watch TV/doze off. Today, we slept until we felt like getting up and managed to make it to the kennel to pick up Titan before he decided we must have forgotten him there. After lots of housework and some settling in time, the kids are happy, DH went back to work tonight, and I decided to post a couple stitchy updates and then get busy putting needle to thread.

First off, I've decided to restart Cabriolet. I'm a middle-of-the-pattern starter, normally, but with this one I decided it would be easier to follow the pattern if I started upper left. Tonight will be spent frogging the 30 or so stitches I've got in and repositioning the fabric to make a new start.

Second, I'm hoping to kit up All Hallow's Eve, a freebie from HAED and make a start on it also. I'd like to make a decent dent in it before the year is out. If there is still time in my evening after that, I'm hoping to get a few more stitches in on WWoG. It's coming along nicely and I don't want to lose my groove, LOL! I also plan to sit down and make some "deadlines", as in how much of a pattern I'd like to have stitched before a certain date/occasion. I haven't tried anything like that before and I don't know if it will work, but I figure it's worth a try. Besides, I work best under pressure :)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Family Getaway Update

Day 2 of our weekend family getaway is here. Yesterday was a whirlwind of little adventures...and a massive amount of 'firsts' for our son. Many more than we realized, actually :) Here's how Day 1 panned out:

We started the day with dropping our canine kid off at the kennel to be boarded for the weekend. Broke. My. Heart. We've never left him anywhere since he came to live with us 2 1/2 years ago. My DH convinced me (all the way down the road) that he would be perfectly fine and, somehow, kept me from turning the car around, picking him back up, and calling the hotel to let them know we would have an additional guest in our room. After a deep breath, and a quick trip to Wal-Mart, we were ON THE ROAD! Yay! Right?

Yep, until we all decided we were hungry and stopped at a rest area a mere 40 miles from home to have a picnic lunch. I suppose the distance isn't so important as the ambience (a very peaceful little wooded area...in the shade) and we had a great little lunchtime. Then, on the road - again! This time not stopping until we got to our hotel. Wait, nope. That's not true. This time only stopping 3 times in 3 totally whacked out locations because we couldn't find our hotel. Mapquest couldn't find our hotel. Our phone's GPS couldn't find our hotel. We knew it was there somewhere...it had already taken our money!! After 2 phone calls, several back-and-forth trips down the same highway, and me biting my lip to keep from crying in frustration, we found it!! And got checked in just in time to catch the shuttle to the airport to pick up our daughter.

On the way to the airport, we discovered that not only had our 6-yr-old never been to an airport, but this would also be his first stay in a hotel. He was uber excited about seeing the planes on the tarmac. He had no idea what was awaiting him inside!! Since our daughter flies alone and is only 12, we are allowed 'Escort Passes' to go through security and wait for her right at her gate. The wait was about 45 minutes, so we passed the time with a couple scoops each of some Baskin Robbins and little man watched out the airport window, enraptured every time a plane took off. I think he would have stayed there forever had I just left him with a blanket and pillow. Alas, I had to peel him away long enough to claim our baby girl off the plane and head off in search of her luggage. 

As luck would have it, WWE (the professional wrestling outfit) is having their live Monday night show (WWE Monday Night RAW) tonight in St. Louis. So, yesterday, several of the wrestlers were arriving at the airport and our kiddos got the chance to meet a couple at the baggage claim, get their autographs, and even see a couple more on the way out to our hotel van. Another first for the little guy!! Then it was back to the hotel for some pool time, some pizza (by delivery, because I was not about to try to navigate my way back here in the dark!), and...aahhhh, bedtime.

Our daughter had a fantastic time in Texas, but is very glad to be home. And we're so very glad to have her home. Now, here we are at 6:45 am, waiting on the kids to wake up so we can go down for some breakfast before heading off to the wonderfully awesome St. Louis Zoo. Yet another first for the young one. He's going to have to start writing these down. July 22-23, 2012 may go down in his history as the Best. Days. EVER. :)

Friday, July 20, 2012

Thursday Stitch Therapy

I've decided to try and 'give' myself one day a week where I spend the entire evening stitching and nothing else. Sounds like a pipe dream, I know, but you know the old saying: "If Momma ain't happy...". Since Thursdays have proven to be the day that we have the least amount of things going on, I'm going to try to post a Thursday Stitch Therapy update every Friday morning. I'll do my best to make this a weekly thing, providing I don't sit down some Thursday to stitch and find that I have a guilty conscience for not finishing the laundry or sweeping the floors, lol.

This week, I feel good about my progress report! I spent all last evening stitching and watching random movies on Netflix. I'm a huge fan of independent films and can spend hours watching/listening to them while I stitch. It was just the relaxation I needed after the craziness of the last couple weeks. Here is what WWoG looked like before I started:

WWoG 7/18/12

And here is what it looks like now:

WWog 7/19/12
On a side note: I wish like heck I could manage to get the same lighting every time I take a picture. Sheesh!
Anyway, this weekend will most likely bring zero progress, but for good reason. Our daughter is coming home on Sunday after 5 weeks spent with her biological father and his family in Texas. 5 weeks is a looong time to be away from home when you're 12 and we've missed her terribly! We'll be taking our son (he's 6) and heading to St. Louis to pick her up at the airport. Then it's an overnight stay there (in a hotel, not at the airport, lol), with plans to spend the whole day Monday at the St. Louis Zoo...one of my favorite places on the planet! We don't plan to be home until late Monday evening. Then Tuesday will be a Dr's appointment for DH, picking our dog up at the kennel, and upacking bags/doing laundry. Wednesday is back to work...and reality. Ugh.

With any luck, I'll have the motivation (and energy) to pick this up again sometime on Wednesday evening. Here's hoping...lol.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Progress is Progress...Right??

I was hoping to get page 1 of the chart for Wondrous Works of God (WWoG) finished last night. Unfortunately, I didn't quite make it. My delay had a little bit to do with a couple of needy kittens, my obsession with fast-forwarding through commercials on my DVR'd programs (have I told you how much I despise commercials?), and the fact that we were soon to be naked had I not taken frequent breaks to do laundry.  

Even through all that, I managed to put in about 200 more stitches on WWoG. I also took some time and put together the Cabriolet kit and got a small start on it. Only about 28 stitches...but it's a start. Below are before and after pics of WWoG. I have no after pic of Cabriolet...I was too fed up with all the other things going on to try and take a worthwhile picture, lol. 

WWoG Before (7/17/12)
WWoG After (7/18/12)

Hopefully, tomorrow I'll have much more progress to show because tonight...I STITCH!! :)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Cross one off the list!

Fairie Treasures is Finished

By: Mirabilia Designs / Nora Corbett
Design Size: 155w x 189h
Stitched 2 over 2 on 28-ct Mocha Belfast Linen by Zweigart
Stitched For: Myself
Started: mid-February 2012
Finished: July 15, 2012

Fairie Treasures by Mirabilia

Close up of beading on wings
Close up of beading on skirt

I received my order of the last of the beads for this one over the weekend and was finally able to sit down and put in the final stitches last night. My DH is itching to get started on my frame for this one...and I can't wait to get her up on the wall. 

This is my first official finish of 2012 (and it's already July!!), but once I started this one I found myself dedicating 90% of my stitching time to her. I started around mid-February and have close to 100 hours of stitching in.

So glad she's done! And I'm already thinking about which one on 'The List' I'm going to kit up next, lol!!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

My First Blog Hop via STNA!

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

The theme of this (my very first!!) blog hop:
"Some of us have a favorite chair that we sit in to stitch, others prefer to enjoy a steaming mug of tea while they stitch. Maybe you need to get comfortable and put on your pajamas before you pick up your needle or you simply must rearrange all the sofa pillows before you sit down. Sometimes the ritual is in the clean up when we’re done and everything must go in a certain place. What sort of stitching rituals do you have when you sit down to work on your projects?"

I, myself, don't refer to them as rituals, but anyone around me when I sit down to stitch probably would, lol. To me, it simply feels like a routine that I've done so many times I don't even think about it anymore...it just happens. First of all, I have "my" end of the couch (the other end is DH's), which I prefer over sitting in a chair. Our couch ends recline, so I like to have a place to prop my legs now that I'm getting too 'old' (33 is old, right?) to sit comfortably with them underneath me, like I used to. I sit at the right end of the couch and use either the end table next to me or the right couch arm to hold my magnetic chart board on its stand. The cushion to the left of me is where my floss box, needle organizer and, most importantly, the remote control are. My daylight lamp is behind me and directly over my right shoulder and my scissors are usually tucked into the crook where my right leg and hip meet. Although, that's becoming dangerous as, more than once, I've gotten up (forgetting my scissors are there) and nearly amputated a toe!

Like many other stitchers, I have to have the TV on when stitching. Normally, I either watch Lifetime movies or catch up on back episodes of Law & Order (all 3 variations) on Netflix. I also like to turn on old sitcoms (Friends, Golden Girls, Cheers) or sometimes just a random, unknown movie. I can't stitch very well during my weekly episodic shows, because I find I spend too much time watching the show and very little time stitching. I'm always afraid I'll frog an area while not paying enough attention to my project. Coffee is also a necessity for me when stitching. It doesn't matter what time of day it is, I have to have a fresh pot of coffee available and a cup right beside me anytime I sit down to stitch.

Once I'm finished for the day, I take a picture of progress made (as much or little as that might be, lol) and I pack everything back into my clear Stitch Happy tote bag and place it out of the way. Most often I'm working with Q-snaps, so I don't need a 'safe' place for my lap stand. I only use it for BAP's these days. But, with 3 cats and a constantly shedding Saint Bernard, safe places to keep my stitching are very necessary. I also stitch quite a bit at work, during my down time, so carrying the tote makes it easy to take my current project from home to work and back with little fuss.

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
Find the instructions on how to participate in this round by clicking here.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The 'Overly Ambitious' List 2012

Here is my list of 'Maybe I Won't Finish It, But I Promise to At Least Start It' for 2012:

1. Fairie Treasures by Mirabilia - FINISHED! JULY 15, 2012

2.  Wondrous Works of God kit by Bucilla

3. Acorn Fairy by Cross Stitch Addicts (free pattern)

4.  Cabriolet kit by Bucilla

5.  The Forest Goddess by Mirabilia

6.  Three Wise Men by Stoney Creek Designs

7.  Old Time Santa (pattern torn from a decades old magazine; designer and model photo not available)

8.  All Hallows Eve (HAED free pattern)

9.  Woodland Enchantress kit by Dimensions

10.  Liberty Angel by Leisure Arts

Ok, ok, I know. This list is insane! Even for the most accomplished stitcher with nothing but time and needles on her hands. That's why it's affectionately titled the 'Overly Ambitious' list...because I'm nothing, if not ambitious. And I love to have a goal (or, in this case, 10 very large goals!). 

The good news is that #1 on the list is only missing a tiny bit of backstitch and the addition of the Mill Hill Crystal Treasures, and she'll be D-O-N-E! Also, #2 is halfway through the first page of the (6-page) pattern; #3 is kitted up and started, #5 is ready to put in Q-snaps and start, and #7 is about 50% finished (but I have an aversion to stitching winter things in the summertime). The others...well...we shall see! Updates to come :)

Happy Stitching!


I'm new to the blogging world, but I decided to give it a try in order to have a way to keep track of my cross stitching obsession hobby. I tend to stitch a lot, when the kids and the hubby are otherwise occupied, but I don't keep a very good record of when I start or finish projects, how long they take to complete, or keep pics of my works-in-progress (WIPs). Hopefully, this will be the place where I do all that while motivating myself to keep working for the finishes...and maybe picking up a bit of inspiration from you all along the way! :)

I'm all about positivity and motivation and I love to exchange ideas and hear other viewpoints. You are welcome to leave comments, ideas, tips and tricks, encouragement, or any other positive thing you choose. I will be regularly posting progress pictures, updates on my WIPs, recent stash acquisitions, and maybe even some stories and anecdotes from home...because my family is just that kind of crazy.

I hope you enjoy your visit...and I'd love to hear from you. Stay tuned for more to come very soon.