Monday, December 31, 2007

Wishing You a Happy New Year

I know that it is already 2008 in most of the world, but I just wanted to say thanks for reading and commenting here. I'm amazed and pleased that you stop by my blog.

I hope that 2008 is kind to you and is filled with more hope than despair.

Kian is on my lap as I type this, chattering away and clearly intent on making a break from Mommy's lap. Chas is washing dishes and Angie is attempting to finish dinner so that we can introduce Kian to our Family New Year's Tradition--Watching The Jungle Book (animated). Singing and cavorting around the living room are involved. It's a cozy good time.

Just forfun, here is a little glimpse of me, created by my husband in meez. I added an anklet, which you can't see, but pleases me because I know it is there. I think only three people (including Chas) reading this blog have actually seen me in person, so you must trust me when I tell you that this is a reasonably good representation of me, as close as any animated gif will be. I was tempted to add the floor length Winter Goddess robe (in purple), but I couldn't stop giggling--even animated me can't quite pull that off. The black leather international spy top was right out as well. So here you have simply me:

Wishing you peace, joy, love, hope, happiness and other good things in the new year.

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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Tell Me These Aren't Cute!

Look here.

You can't can you?

Because they are just adorable.

I was never fond of the cows, but I love these moufles. I'd love to make them two-sided.

Now someone just needs to make some tree shaped designs in this style and I'll be unstoppable.


2007: Year of the WIP Review

Well back in January, I declared that I would be a WIP slayer and I set some goals for myself. So let us see how well I did (try not to chuckle too loudly).

Of the WIPS and UFOS I had specifically identified as finishing, I managed to finish only Midi 1, Snow Crystal, QS Ballet Pigs and Stretch. Not bad, but I had hoped for more progress. Of course, I did bring a tiny life into the world and he certainly kept me hopping this year, so four finishes isn't terrible.

Of my proposed new starts, I only actually started the Mystery HAED project and ornaments each month. For a serial starter that is just fantastic.

I managed to stitch at least one ornament for every ornament SAL and I stitched during eleven of the twelve HAED Challenge SALs.

As 2007 closes, I have finished 23 projects of my first 25 project challenge.

I had 29 happy dances this year and that is so much better than the measly three from 2006. I think I am up for more SALs and goal setting to keep me motivated. I completed 18 ornaments and 11 other projects. Of those 11, only the Love Quilt Square, Tea with Jane and the Halloween Tuffet were new starts, so eight finishes is attributable to WIP slaying.

Of things projects not finished, I put needle and thread to fabric in all the projects I had hoped to finish so at least progress was made.

I'm pleased with what I was able to accomplish. A few more big finishes would have been good, but, there is always next year!

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Done and Dusted.

I am pleased to announce that Midi 1 is complete as of December 25, 2007. My beloved husband allowed me roughly 42 minutes of stitching time last night to finish the final jessica windows, bottom border beads and all the bi cones.

I wish I could say that I am thrilled at the moment but it feels a bit anticlimactic at the moment. Maybe because I've been struggling to finish her for the last three months. I just have an overwhelming sense of, "Finally!" and a deep sigh of relief that at least one of my big projects will not be carrying over into 2008.

No photos right now. I didn't take a picture at work today (it's usually too dark when I return home in the evening for a decent picture so I take photos on my lunch break. She is lovely and I am looking forward to showing her to you.

I'm working on a few ornaments at the moment (well obviously I'm typing now but your get the idea). They are for Angie's teachers--how tacky is it that I didn't finish them before the break (be honest, I'm actually soliciting your opinions). We did contribute to the group gift for the teachers so we didn't completely ignore them, but I just wanted to make them something as well to show how much I appreciate their work with my daughter. I'm also trying to stitch ornaments for Kian and Angie. Right now I feel that I'm in ornament purgatory and stitching is losing my love at present.

I would have liked to have completed my twenty five project challenge this year, but I suppose I will endure if I don't finish the last few projects until the new year. Poor Amethyst is languishing for the want of a few crystals. Perhaps she'll be the first finish of the new year. With Midi complete I am pondering a new start, or should I just focus on another WIP and knock it out as well?

It's the end of one year and the start of another so I'm contemplating goal setting very soon. 2007 was very successful as I can see many finishes in the sidebar--especially when compared to my paltry three finishes in 2006. The goal setting and this blog have been enormously helpful in motivating me. I'll try to maintain both in the coming year.

I'm wondering if I should add other tricks to my stitching repertoire to fool myself into finishing more projects:

Should I use some variation of Nicki's one motif per week?
Should I have a focus piece?
Should I try a regular SAL on one project (yes Nicki is a huge inspiration to me)?
Should my next challenge be larger or smaller?
Should make 2008 my Stitch from my stash year?
Do I craft a new rotation? (and can my serial starting ways allow me to stick to it?)

I have lots of ideas tumbling around in my brain, we'll see where I land in a few days. I might try to mix it up a little bit to maintain my excitement about stitching.

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Tuesday, December 04, 2007

December Stitchy Hopes and Ponderings

Well I had high hopes for November, but Thanksgiving and then being ill really took a lot of time from stitching.

But I did manage to stitch on Taj, WG, Midi, and the Christmas Mandala. I don't think I stitched any other Chatelaines. It was nice to focus on them for a bit. I'm disappointed that I didn't finish any Chatelaines this month, but I'm more bothered by the fact that I didn't start anything new. I love starting things.

I'm back to a more varied stitching regimen this month.

1. Finish Midi 1
2. Finish Amethyst Mystery
3. Stitch a bit on WG
4. Stitch a bit on Stealing Oats.
5. Stitch a bit on Taj
6. Stitch a bit on Tree of Hope
7. Stitch a bit on Christmas Tree Mandala (freebie)
8. Start and finish the teacher gifts. (I hope I receive the materials soon).
9. Stitch a bit on Japanese Lady

I think I'll hold off on new starts (except for the teacher gifts) until the new year. And by typing that I realize that I will probably give in to temptation and have multiple starts this month. Maybe I'll just hold off until Christmas. I'm also hoping to do an out with the old/in with the new year SAL at the Chatelaine Board. And then I'll try to do another Lenten SAL there in preparation for the Chatelaine Olympics next summer.

Midi would go faster if I would just stop tinkering with the design. I keep trying different things, some of which don't work and then I frog. I changed the dress, which I love, but then it caused me to change the roses in the archway, which led to a change in the beads serving as the buds on the arch, which caused me to think that I should change the beads in the bush immediately to the left of the arch. But I didn't like it (too bright--it drew the eyes away from the center of the design) so I frogged the beads and re-beaded with the original beads. I didn't like the color used for the sheaf stitch so I went with a different color silk, which caused me to re-think the greenish bead used on the vines. I've selected a substition for the original bead, I hope. Then I decided to go with Martina's original chart for the partial jessica windows, but I don't like the way it looks. I'm not sure I want to use the substitution offered by another stitcher because it moves the center of the window by one square. I think I'm over thinking this design. Sigh.

I just can't believe it's December already.

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Monday, December 03, 2007

Awwww--I needed that....

You Are a Gingerbread House
A little spicy and a little sweet, anyone would like to be lost in the woods with you.

Very nice considering I feel that my personality has taken a nose dive due to being sick. Have I mentioned that both kids were running low grade fevers while Chas was in West Virginia with the boys?

(I pulled the quiz from Janet--Thanks.)

The materials list is out for the Celtic Mystery by Chatelaine. Allow me to say a heartfelt, OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

I have not peeked at the screenshot because I enjoy the slow unveiling of the design. As usual, I'm debating fabric choices--no white for me. I'm leaning toward a bit of green. I'd like to get the kit with my gift certificate, but I'm not certain I have any hope of keeping up with the parts. I have a fairly poor track record as indicated in the sidebar.

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