#taskersontour Whitianga Edition

Hello everyone! As promised, here’s a bit about a recent weekend getaway.

Whitianga is a coastal town about 3hours drive from home (or four, if you leave later than expected on a Friday afternoon, doh). It’s reasonably quiet and peaceful for most of the year then comes alive for the summer months, especially during Beach Hop with all the classic cars & music. For this trip we deliberately chose a quiet period, so we could have a look around the area without the hordes.

We rented a comfortable modern house in the centre of the residential district – a few minutes’ drive to the beach and supermarket, but within walking distance of several good restaurants and cafes. The area the town is on is flat, with wide streets and footpaths – really safe for cycling or pedestrians. Only Mase came with us this time, which is very odd, but it was argument free! He enjoyed being the only, being spoilt and having all the attention. This trip marked his first visit to a pub and he’s still in awe that he was allowed inside – it was lunchtime, kid! He was super polite to the staff in the hope he didn’t get kicked out, which made them laugh.

On Saturday we did the Cathedral Cove walk. This local landmark is in a few movies that you might have seen – it’s the beach where the children land in the Narnia series, below the cliffs of Car Paravel (YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUlVUvffXwk) and it’s every bit as gorgeous on an overcast day as it is on the big screen (or little, if you’re on your mobile). Of course we met people we know – the Si curse – but on the whole we got to enjoy the sound of the sea, birds and the wind in the trees as we walked. Mase mocked us for being slow both ways (yes, I am massively unfit) but spoiler alert, it wasn’t me asleep in the back seat on the way back to Whitianga!

There’s going to be a soldier’s memorial arbour there too – anyone can “buy” a tree that will be planted and cared for by the trust.

We drove home on Sunday trying to beat the incoming storm – and got home in time to unpack then listen to the hail on the roof. Ah, bliss.

WIP Wednesday #259

Hello everyone! Sorry for not being around; I’m slowing down as the year moves on into Spring. We’ve spent some time away from home (both planned holiday & unplanned hospital) and the time at home has been slow sorting out of drawers, gardens, and planning landscaping. All going to plan, tomorrow half my front lawn will be taken up by a man & a digger and we will be that much closer to installing the swim spa and a decked area for outside eating etc.

Last time I wrote I forgot to make October goals. Officially, it’s simply to keep up with the weekly #magicalstitches homework. I’m not aiming to finish any more Extra Credit this month. I’m also expecting my Garden Prelude bill, so a no-spend month is also out of the question!

I have finished three small things this month. Mase’s choice, the Blackbird Designs Sampler House stocking (need to FFO), Cloudsfactory Marauder’s Map (already at the framers) and a plastic canvas Harry Potter that’s ready for the fridge. Until I pay that bill (It hasn’t arrived yet) I’m 76 in credit. Hooray.

I’ll try to write up our recent Whitianga trip for another post this week – and I have a couple of books to review too. Take care!

August & September WIPocalypse

Hello everyone! I hope you’re well. WIPocalypse is the monthly check-in SAL hosted by Measi on her blog, and via the Facebook group – we welcome all enablers! Click on the icon to the right to learn more.

August Goals:

  • Complete the Year 5 Extra Credit homework (4/11 to go) LEFT ONE TASK INCOMPLETE
  • Complete Mermaid of Atlantis stitching (seriously possible if the weekly homework goes my way) NOT QUITE – BUT USED WHERE POSSIBLE
  • No Spend! NOPE – SPENT $10.40

September Goals:

  • Complete four EC NOPE, just two
  • Complete Mermaid of Atlantis (lined up for a few of the monthly Extra Credit) NOPE
  • Bead & FFO some Mill Hill ornies NOPE

All up, in August I didn’t stitch as much as in July. We finished the car & I spent a lot of time walking & listening to audio books rather than on my butt. Still happy with what I got done tho.

  • Fairy Idyll 231
  • Mermaid of Atlantis 435
  • Shakespeare’s Fairies 1957
  • Tapestry Cat 202
  • Stitchrovia Austen Quote 404
  • Coffee Quaker 1024
  • Jeanette Douglas 2012 Peace 417
  • Four Seasons in NZ 247
  • The Guardian 565
  • Erica Tui (new start) 506
  • MH Santa’s Sleighs 500
  • Un Ricarmo Per Rinascere 509
  • Reindeer Parade 213

That’s over 7410 stitches for the month.

In September I slowed right down (lots of reading & more time with Mum) and got in just over 6000 stitches.

  • Fairy Idyll 1353
  • Mermaid of Atlantis 868 (just beading to go now)
  • Fairy Tales, a new start 3141
  • Un Ricarmo Per Rinascere 321
  • Sampler House, a new start from Blackbird Designs 607

SFS: In August, I didn’t manage a no spend month (again) but it was just a few DMC & two charts at the Hospice shop. Turned out the person I picked them up for already had them, so if you’re into Paula Vaughan they are up on my @pauladestash IG account. I have ordered the new Mirabilia, Garden Prelude, but the bill hasn’t arrived yet so I can’t count it. With the ornie finish, I’m 30.85 in the black.

And then September turned to custard! I was given some money so went wild – $110.10 in 20 minutes at Ribbon Rose. Oops. Luckily I also sold Lady of the Flag for a reasonable (not eBay enormous) amount to a fellow stitcher, so that kept me in the black, at 26.92.

August Question: What do you have on your stitching bucket list? (for example, specific projects, designers, fibers, etc) I have two Chatelaine designs in my stash – but with a few large Mira’s on my WIP list either is a way away from starting.

September Question: What finishing style have you never tried but would love to do? More hand-finishing – Mase wants this Blackbird Designs stocking ASAP – so that’s on the list to knock off. Plus I’d like to take a framing course next year.

See you next week (hopefully!) or at the least, for the October WIPoclaypse.

WIP Wednesday #258

Hello everyone! Sorry for not posting last week – Wednesday got away from me.

The last calendar week of August had two sets of Magical Stitches homework – 6 days completed Year Five, and we’ve started Year Six, the Half Blood Prince. There were three potential parts of Y5W9 – we had to post 5 WIPs before the Sunday; then from the Monday stitch 500 on whichever was picked (for Gryffindor it was WIP 4, which for me was Un Ricarmo per Rinascere). The last part was bonus; do 200 on each of the other four WIPs to get a total of 13 points. I managed them all – chose all Nora/Mirabilia so that I’d be fully engaged.

Y6 day1 was simple – 100 stitches for 1 point on our latest start. Unfortunately I didn’t pick up a needle during that 24 hour period (it has to start at midnight CST time, which is 5pm my time). Too much going on getting the house ready for the week ahead.

Y6W1 had three parts: 400 stitches in something we’ve made a Vow or promise about (for me, this was Mermaid of Atlantis as I wanted to finish her this year); 300 stitches in a design that starts with a letter in DURSLEY (I did 321 stitches in Un Ricarmo Per Rinascere) & lastly 300 stitches in something that gives us FOMO (the fear of missing out) to note Professor Slughorn’s return to teaching (I did 310 stitches in Fairy Idyll, a design I was so determined to have).

I’m now at the bead stage with MoA!

We’re now in Y6W2, and have to choose which path we will take – Light or Dark? We have to write an explanation, do 600 stitches in our chosen path and 400 in the other. There’s a bonus of 200 stitches in our most blingiest project (which for me would be Mermaid of Atlantis, with her Kreinik & beads) but as we are travelling this weekend, I’m going to use my new start & focus on the week tasks and some monthly EC tasks.

WIP Wednesday #257

Hello everyone! We had a full on end of week, with time playing at the museum (find me a little boy who doesn’t like dinosaurs), at the beach and game day on Saturday. The Massey team Mase played in won comfortably, but Sho won opposition player of the day with his beautiful tackles. Great day in our household! Sunday was very odd once we got home from the airport and had an emptier house.

The #magicalstitches homework was in three parts, to celebrate the restoration of Dumbledore to Headmaster of the school. Part one was 300 stitches on the 11th WIP in my list, as 11 Death Eaters were captured…WIP 11 was finished, so I rolled over into WIP 12, The Guardian. Part two was 300 in any colour but pink to celebrate Umbridge leaving the school. I skipped the bonus task to focus on a monthly task and knocked off 500 stitches and beads in my Christmas sleighs.

Have a good week everyone – let me know a little something you’re grateful for. Gratitude shared increases happiness all round J

WIP Wednesday #256

Hello everyone! Apologies for not posting last week – we had a lot going on at home. By the time I remembered about the WIP it was Friday… this week we have a Japanese billet with us for the week so it’s been an adventure! Sho is lovely, coming out of his shell & has a good sense of humour. We will miss him on Sunday when we put him on the plane home to his family.

Week 6 involved Professor Umbridge coming into power and we had to stitch on something that we really wanted to quit, like the students wanted to quit Hogwarts. I wanted to quit Coffee Quaker, as I simply got tired of the over-one. In the end, taking it everywhere, I managed 1024 stitches. I didn’t stitch on anything else this week tho.

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Week 7 was O.W.L.S exam week – ick! We had a choice of going for E (exceeds expectations) with 100 stitched on each of the 7 Core/3 Elective subjects for 2pts, or O (outstanding) with 200 stitches giving 5pts. I went overboard again, ignoring the monthly tasks that I hadn’t completed, and worked on getting all O levels. Luckily we had done some “subject” things earlier in the year, so it wasn’t so hard to match up WIPs and subjects.

I picked a Jeannette Douglas design to cover both Astronomy (the quaker star) and History of Magic (words) and got a start & finish with Peace. This is in the 2012 JCS Christmas edition (available on the CD at 123Stitch & other retailers).

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Using the Emma Congdon Austen quote, I covered Herbology (growing Hellebore roses) and Potions (Hellebore is an ingredient in several potions) – not a finish, but over halfway now.

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I used Mirabillia Shakespeare’s Fairies for two other Core subjects – Charms (they summoned fireflies to light their way), & Defence Against the Dark Arts (one wears a diadem, like what Voldemort used as a horcrux).

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The last Core was transfiguration, and as Professor McGonnigal is shown in both her forms in the first chapter of book one, the obvious choice was Tapestry Cat.

Electives – I ignored Arithmancy (would have had to use Coffee Quaker) and Divination (I’m with Hermione, that subject sucks) and chose Ancient Runes (completed all the lettering in Home*Stitch*Ness Four Seasons), Care of Magical Creatures (Mirabilia Mermaid of Atlantis) and Muggle Studies (I stitched the Mary Rose, the Tudor ship that’s in Mermaid of Atlantis as I’d been watching a doco about it while stitching Care).

Hope you all have a lovely week – I’ll be back for next week then it’s WIPoclaypse.

Back Roads to Belonging

Recently I’ve been reading an ARC of Kristen Strong’s latest, which released yesterday. It’s a worthy follow on from Girl Meets Change & I love it. Parts are like I’m actually sitting down with a girlfriend, it feels that personal.

Anyways, I encourage you to pick it up and review. There are always parts of our life where we feel like an outsider & this is about how that’s kind of normal. We aren’t all the same square peg.

There’s a lovely article on Ann Voskamp’s site today. Again, I encourage you to take a read.

When You Don’t Belong – and why that’s Okay