Sunday’s Stitches & Stuff – Episode 15 – On the Way to Cape May

As I write this post, we are two hours into an eight hour drive to Cape May, NJ for our annual summer holiday! This vacation comes at the perfect time, as I have been dealing with a lot of crap with work lately, and while I have made a decision about that, I need some breathing room. Surprisingly this morning went fairly smoothly, despite getting out of bed 45 minutes later than planned. Both the hubby and I are so excited, we so enjoy our week every year and I personally am looking forward to much reading and stitching time, including a haul from Stitch by Stitch at the Washington Street Mall! Here are a few of the things I have to look forward to this week:
Sip & Stitch Spot for the Week

Stitching Project – June & July in the Year of Celebrations Series

Reading Selections – Truthwitch (never finished), Serafina & the Black Coat, plus backups on the Kindle

Having as much fun as last year!

Thanks for reading and have a great week.

Sunday’s Stitches & Stuff – Episode 13

This has been quite a week. We had a nice long weekend at the beginning due to the Fourth of July holiday, and then a very hectic end of the week, also due to the Fourth of July holiday. Yet, hubby and I did find some time to have an afternoon date on Sunday at a new local café. It was a lovely café with good coffee, good food and a nice atmosphere, we will definitely be going back. This coming week will be hectic again as we are preparing to go away on the weekend, but hopefully we will find time to breathe in between the chaos.

Before moving on I thought I would share the Project Life page I made for our Fourth of July holiday:


While I was at it I played a little catch-up and made a quick page for Mardi Gras back in February:


Onto the nitty-gritty…

What I’m Stitching

So I shared on Wednesday that I celebrated the Fourth of July by completing a mini sampler from the book 365 Tiny Cross Stitch Designs by Kooler Design Studio.

Here is a picture of that finished piece:


Also, I am finally finished the month of May from A Year of Celebrations series! I have no idea why it took me so long to get May done except for the fact that the frog has been around for a long time.

Here is the finished May pattern:


I also threw together a quick slideshow of my progression through the piece you can check it out on YouTube:

What I’m Reading

I’m trying to finish up The Keeper of Lost Things, by Ruth Hogan. I only have about 150 pages left and I’m not sure why I haven’t been able to finish it yet, because I love the story. The only thing I can say is that I’ve not really been able to focus well this past week.

 

Anyway I hope to finish it up in the next day and move on to the book that is slotted for fantasy book club this month, Truthwitch by Susan Dennard.

 

What I’m Watching

Currently I’m not binge watching anything. I just have not been in the mood for massive consumption of television. I am keeping current with American Ninja Warrior and World of Dance, but other than that I’ve really just been hanging out on YouTube during my stitching sessions.

Highlights

A couple weeks ago I shared my discovery of and quickly developing love affair with my Mini Happy Planner. Well, the saga continues. While there are an extremely large amount of free printable’s out there for page layouts, monthly layouts, weekly layouts, and stickers, I have been finding great joy in designing my own stickers and printables. Using Adobe Photoshop Elements, I created templates for myself and have been using digital scrapbooking techniques to personalize my Mini Happy Planner.

Here’s a picture of my favorite layout design with a happy camper theme using a free digital scrapbooking kit from Harper Finch:

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

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Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Spring Quilt, 15 Minutes, Valentines, & Spring Tree

The theme of this week seems to be getting stuff done, together, while waiting for Spring. We’ve had a great time enjoying the sun, when it peeks out, and I’ve been slowly but steadily getting the house in better shape, from an organization & minimalist perspective. This past week I have also been able to find consistent time to read, stitch, and scrapbook (i.e. Project Life). Additionally, hubby & I were able to find time to just hang out together, both on Valentine’s Day and during the weekend, which can be difficult some weeks with his schedule and my never ending To Do list. Anyway, here are some of the highlights from this week. Continue reading “Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Spring Quilt, 15 Minutes, Valentines, & Spring Tree”

Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Mystery SAL, Valentine’s Day Gift, Junk Drawer, & A Truck

Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Mystery SAL, Valentine’s Day Gift, Junk Drawer, & A Truck

Another Tuesday that I am posting my Sunday Stitches & Stuff post! Either I need to change the name or work on a better schedule for my postings. Truly though, this post covers my week up until midnight on Sunday, or whenever I finally drop into bed, so it makes sense that it takes me a bit to process and write up everything. Continue reading “Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Mystery SAL, Valentine’s Day Gift, Junk Drawer, & A Truck”

Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Progress is Progress, Even If It’s Slow

So I was sick most of the week. I had a runny nose, the chills, and my back was “acting up”. It started out last Friday morning, which was already looking to be a very busy day at work, so I really couldn’t rest. Then Saturday I ended up having to go into work for a few hours, still not feeling well. Sunday I finally got to rest up a bit, but at some point on Monday, things took a turn for the worse when my chronic back pain (long story) flared up and stayed on & off all week. It wasn’t until just last evening when I really started to feel myself again.

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Needless to say I did not get much time to stitch. However, I did try to work on my Happily Ever After SAL in small chunks. Progress is progress after all and I really wanted to finish at least the center section of the pattern before moving on to the next project in my rotation. Amazingly, despite having to frog two whole letters, I did finish the center section early Sunday evening. Here are some pictures of my progress:

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After taking the final picture, I put Happily Ever After away and pulled out the next project, A Year of Celebrations, published by Cross Stitch & Needlework Magazine and designed by Cathy Habermas.

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As I discussed in a previous post, I changed from the recommended linen fabric to 14 count Aida and converted the threads to DMC. February is the motif I am starting with, in hopes of finishing before the months end, and until last night I had not decided if I was going to use the solid color conversions, or substitute in variegated floss, which could make for a gorgeous motif. Well, I decided to go with the varigated floss, so we will see how it turns out. Last night I had intended to just get the fabric on the Q-Snap and thread my needle with the first color so it was ready to go, but I just could help getting a few stitches started right away. Here is my “starting point” on the February motif:
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It feels like this pattern will stitch quickly for me so I am exited to see how far I get this week.
Other aspects of my life were also slow to progress due to my week of illness/injury. The chores backed up a little, and I still have some Christmas decorations that need to come down! My plan is to switch them out for Valentine’s Day this week.
Progress on my Project Life “project’ is moving along, as I have been using my early morning coffee time to work on pages. It is my plan to do a regular monthly/bimonthly Project Life Update post to share my pages, but for right now here are the few pages that I got done this month, most of them are from the end of 2016 and two are “catch up”pages from 2015:

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One last thing, I wanted to brag a bit about my new “charging station” set-up. Since moving into the house last January, I am still learning how best to have things set up, and this one corner of my kitchen counter always seemed to collect junk, while also being where I plug stuff in to charge, if I can find the cords. So I decided to clear off the counter, empty a beautiful decorative box from the craft store of it’s junk, and fill it with all the necessary charging cords for our electronics.

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Now the pretty box sits on the counter by the outlet, with a picture frame, my Bluetooth speaker, and the candy jar. When something needs to be charge, I just pull out its cord, plug it into the wall, and let it “rest” on top of the box while it is charging. I wish I had taken a “before” picture, but this task was accomplished in between sniffles and cups of hot tea. Anyway here is my charging station that I am so proud of, next on the agenda is to make the “junk drawer” underneath suit my purposes.

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Thanks for reading and have a fantastic week full of whatever brings you joy!

Sunday Stitches & Stuff – My 2017 Stitching Rotation & Project Life

Two weeks into the year, and I have already been so busy I’ve barely spent any time with my needle and thread. The good news is that I am completely set up now for a steady rotation of stitching projects, including some “if I get that far” patterns. There is also a large list of things I hope to accomplish in the house, but those projects I will tackle on a month by month basis, as the budget will allow. Additionally, this year I am determined to keep up with my digital scrapbooking. Towards the fall of last year, I developed some very good habits for scrapbooking using the Project Life app and my goal is to stay current with monthly & special event pages, as well as retrospectively get caught up on previous years. At the end of the month I will share the pages I’ve made, but for now here’s a look at the pages I finished last year:

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The first few days of 2017, we were snowed in by winter storm Helena for about 6 days. That time was put to good use as I finished setting up my rotation of projects for this year, and got started on my first new start of the year. With no further ado, here is my 2017 Stitching rotation:
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Happily Ever After SAL by The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery

The first pattern of this year long stitch along was released yesterday, and I can not wait to get started! For Christmas, I recieved the kit for the SAL which included hand dyed fabric from Picture This Plus and it is so beautiful! This will be my first time doing a stitch along and my first time working on hand dyed fabric.

Five Seasons of Quilts by Leisure Arts

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When I first saw this pattern, I fell in love with it, and I knew I wanted to stitch up the whole series as an interchangeable home decor item. However, I never felt motivated enough to kit it up and get started. Until now. When I saw the hand dyed fabric that came with the Happily Ever After SAL kit, I was inspired, leading to the decision to stitch each season of quilts on a different hand dyed fabric that coordinates or compliments the season. To find the fabric I went straight to Picture This Plus, since I loved the other fabric so much, and selected a fabric for my first season, which is Spring.
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I decided to go with this 28 count Cashel fabric in Bashful, which is a light pinkish color, and reminded me of spring time. This will be only my second time stitching over 2 on linen, so hopefully I won’t have to frog (rip out stitches) too much.

A Year of Celebrations, published by Cross Stitch & Needlework Magazine, designed by Cathy Habermas

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For the entirety of 2014 & 2015, I was obsessed with collecting each magazine issue for this series, to have the entire year of mini motifs. Unfortunately, once I got them, I hit a barrier, because the threads listed are not DMC, which is all I really use. Finally, I gave myself a kick in the butt, because I really want to have these adorable 4″x4” monthly motifs to add to my seasonal decor, so I decided to customize the pattern in order to encourage myself to stitch it. Truly, a pattern changed and stitched is better than a pattern never stitched. So I changed from the recommended linen fabric to basic 14 count Aida and converted the threads to DMC. February is the motif I am starting with and I have not decided if I am going to use the solid color conversions, or substitute in variegated floss, which could make for a gorgeous motif.

Mystery SAL

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One of my Facebook cross stitching groups, is hosting a year long mystery stitch along. Throughout the year we are posting pictures of our progress, but we are not sharing what the pattern is until we are finished. Since it is a mystery, let me just say that this project is a Dimensions kit, stitched on 14 count black Aida.

Purse Pouch Project

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Some of you may know about my little kit I keep in my purse, in case you don’t here is a post modified from my old blog about it: Purse Pouch. These projects can go quickly or slow depending on how much unplanned free time I have and the complexity of the project. For the most part, I use mini kits and the first one I have chosen this year is the Mouse from the Busy Bees series by Needlemagic, Inc.

Carryovers – Geisha & Thai Elephant

Unfortunately, I did not finish my Geisha or my Thai Elephant in 2016, so I have carried them over into this year’s rotation. Hopefully they will finish quickly and I can move on to a few other projects I would like to start this year.

If I Get That Far…

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In my “to be kitted’ project bag, I have a few patterns I would love to get started on this year, including: Cloudsfactory’s Famous Woman in History SAL, Mirabilia Designs’ The Raven Queen by Nora Corbett, Nancy Spruance Designs’ Roseland Cottage & Fulton Mansion, and A Cross-Stitcher’s Quit Block Collection for future purse projects.

Loom Knitting

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I have also decided that I am going to include my loom knitting in my weekly project rotation, otherwise I will never finish this scarf, nor get to do any of the other projects that I have pinned. If you want you can check my Loom Knitting Ideas board.
It feels like this is a pretty good rotation to start off with, although I am new to the rotation technique, I think it will definitely help me get some more finishes this year!
Thanks for reading and happy stitching!

Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Stitchathon, needle minders, Christmas parade, & digital prints

Wow, what a weekend! Very busy and activity filled. Friday started off with my personal Stitch-a-thon retreat, which carried over a bit into Saturday and Sunday.  Saturday hubby and I attended the Wake Forest Christmas parade, which was fabulous. I also found time on Saturday to work on a few digital prints and iPhone photography.  Sunday ended up being a ho ho ho shopping day, with some time found for working on my floss organization and finding a pretty neat sculpture as a photography subject.

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Continue reading “Sunday Stitches & Stuff – Stitchathon, needle minders, Christmas parade, & digital prints”