November 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.

November Goals:

  • Keep up with weekly #magicalstitches homework
  • Finish some CF or Mill Hill pieces

I managed to keep up with both of the above – 4 Mill Hill finishes (two each of the Celestial Sleigh and Pumpkin Carriage) and four Cloudsfactory items for Aurora’s parcel – Prince Eric, Oliver, Rapunzel & Ursula. All the weekly homework was done, some to the bare minimum, and I got one Extra Credit in. I’ve completely slowed down with regards to stitching.

December Goals:

  • Keep up with weekly #magicalstitches homework
  • Plan January WIPs
  • No Spend!

November Question: What new stitches or techniques did you learn this year? The short answer is – nothing. I didn’t take any class or attempt embroidery or anything else. A crochet class or at least the embroidery refresher at Liz’s is on my wish list for 2020, but I wasn’t in the headspace to try anything new this year.

Stitch From Stash: I am so far in the red I won’t be climbing out this year. Even with a gift from Mum specifically for my stash budget, I have overspent on Miras and fabric that I may not even touch next year, & I’m a little horrified at myself. I have seven FO’s, but they are all relatively small. At least it’s only stash I have spent my feelings on this year, and not all the other things like previous years. Overall, fiscally I’m in better shape than previous.

October 2019 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.

I didn’t set any real goals for October – just to keep up with the weekly prompts in #magicalstitches and try to stay sane. Achieved the first, will debate on the second!

I managed an increase in stitching with 7841 stitches overall. 1520 in Fairy Tales, 1242 in Fairy Idyll and an FO in the Marauder’s Map (985 to finish) which is now framed and ready to go in Baby Bailey’s nursery. Three of my Saturday’s were spent with Mum, as she can’t be left alone, and as she naps more and more there’s more time to kill.

SFS – despite having four FO’s I spent well more than I earned, and I’m now $76.72 in the red. If I get a couple of finishes in – or maybe 6 of the Clouds Factory people I’m doing for Aurora – I’ll finish the year in the black, even if I don’t finish the six months. I look at 2017 & 2018 and I can see the same pattern. I think as home and work pressures build, I go off and spend, altho this year I’ve been a lot cleaner than others. Or I was tighter earlier in the year, or Nora didn’t release Mira’s that I really liked earlier in the year. It’s probably a combination of all those things.

November Goals:

  • Keep up with weekly #magicalstitches homework
  • Finish some CF or Mill Hill pieces

October Question – Do you prefer to stitch on a rotation or one project at a time? Well, until this year and #magicalstitches I thought I was more a one project girl. But I quite like the rotation thing, so while I’m not going to re-join the group for 2020, I thought I would do a slower rotation (weekly rather than almost daily) and get some FO’s done. I am still toying with Stuart’s clever CYOA version of the Harry Potter books and might also start that.

WIPocalypse June 2019

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.

In June, I’ve completed the following stitch numbers – which would be a lot more, if it wasn’t for the Toy Car project taking up a lot of evenings:

  • Coffee Quaker 106
  • Celtic Winter 519
  • The Guardian 1291
  • Mermaid of Atlantis 3773 (two more Ultimate #magicalstitches completed & I am well into the bottom half of the design)
  • Shakespeare’s Fairies 1064 (that’s the half way mark appearing!)
  • Labyrinth 113 (Sir Didymus is about to appear)

Wowzers, this is 6886 stitches for the month. That’s more than last month, how did I fit that in?

I also have an FFO – my Cloudsfactory We’re All Mad Here biscornu! My first attempt, and it’s a bit lumpy & in retrospect, understuffed, but if I ever make one again, I know what to do.

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June Goals:

  • WIPocalypse One-A-Day with Coffee Quaker (also one of my remaining EC tasks of 500 stitches on a geometric) FAIL – I picked it up 3 times. Just did not have the feels for this piece at all.
  • Hello May & Hello June FAIL
  • Celtic Winter (the last EC task of 500 stitches) FAIL – got half way tho, so at least I did pick it up!
  • Don’t spend! ACHIEVED!

July Goals:

  • WIPocalypse One-A-Day with a twist – just stitch every day
  • Hello May
  • Don’t spend!

Question of the Month: How are you doing with your goals so far this year?

Goals for 2019:

  • Finish SFS in the black – HALFWAY MARK ACHIEVED
  • Complete & FFO the remaining monthly Hello There pieces (Mar-Nov) HMMM
  • Re-start Shakespeare’s Fairies & complete one fairy ACHIEVED
  • Work on Tapestry Cat, Fairy Idyll, Arezzo, Four Seasons of NZ ACHIEVED WITH A FINISH

Overall, I’m pretty happy with my progress for this year. My stress levels are well below where they could be, thanks mostly to Si’s understanding, help & affection; a bit of medication & a daily bit of “me” time. I’ve worked on every WIP that I had started, have got several finishes including Arezzo and some framing.

SFS: The one monthly goal I did achieve! No spend, no finishes but I am $17.80 in the black. Woot!

WIP Wednesday #237

Hello everyone! It’s hump day, hooray.

Life update: I’ve been on antidepressants for three weeks now & had a check up yesterday. A lot of improvement in my overall wellbeing, my blood work was fantastic & I’ve actually lost 1.3kg (side benefit). I’ve got another check in 3 months & will continue with the meds in the meantime. I also went back to bootcamp this week…. mild ouch.

S

titching wise I frogged the initial start on Shakespeare’s Fairies by Mirabilia. Neither hubs nor I liked the fabric, so on Monday I went back to the initial plan of Urewera Mist and restarted. Much happier.

At work, I’ve finished the paper stitched version of Golden Tannenbaum by Mill Hill & started a plastic canvas version. Once that’s stitched, I’ll bead them both. Then onto a Santa!

Hope you all have a lovely week.

WIP Wednesday #225 & August WIPocalypse

Hello lovely people! I am in a much better head space this week – had awkward convo with family member & hard convo with the boss out of the way, and on Sunday we (Si & I) completed the Loaded Tough Guy mud run. Exceptionally slow time, but we’d made a decision to stick together so that meant we were governed by my fitness – then on the first downward slide, T injured his back. This was maybe a quarter of the way in? So after that, it was Si, myself, T, Alvin, Mel & Ondrake working together. We picked up Kim (Mel & Kim earworm for you other 80’s survivors hehehe) who had been left behind by her team and while we were the last group to finish, we finished. My shoes are a write-off and my body isn’t that far behind. However – massive achievement, given the course conditions and the mental fortitude needed. My Samsung watch says I climbed 49 flights & did 9.6 km that day. And that won’t count the sliding downhill – I did a lot of that both on my arse and my feet! I recommend Magnesium supplement – it’s made a huge difference.

Stitching has been excellent. I have beaded Deepest Love & Renaissance Mermaids, and have started Waiting for Ships. My work project is two copies of Mill Hill’s Peridot ornament (long time readers will remember I did a lot of these a couple of years ago for family members who don’t appreciate, so now it’s one set for me & one for a gift to a stitchy friend).

As I missed the July WIPocalypse, here’s my answers to both questions (click on the icon on the side to take you to Measi’s site, where the main event is hosted. If you’re a stitcher, please join our motley crew).

JULY – Half Year recap – how are my goals for the year?

Huh. Looking at my points from January this year, not great at all …

So my focus pieces for 2018 (given that I want to end in the black for Stitch From Stash also) are in order of attention (bracket date indicates the start month & year):

  • Mirabilia Ashley’s Roses RR section (Dec 2018) FINISHED
  • Semco Toy Story Sampler (October 2013) – Zac will be 15 soon, & this needs to be done before then! But first I have to hunt it down… I KNOW WHERE IT IS, I JUST DON’T WANT TO DO IT
  • Mirabilia Fairy Idyll (September 2017) – Gail has loaned me the chart, & I want to return it this year MADE STEADY PROGRESS, ABOUT A THIRD THRU AND AM LOOKING FOR MY OWN COPY SO I CAN RETURN GAIL’S
  • TW Tapestry Cat (Dec 2006!) – because it deserves progress NOT EVEN TOUCHED
  • Mirabilia Persephone (May 2015) –because I want to get thru that skirt! MADE A LOT OF PROGRESS, DOWN TO THE LAST QUARTER!!!
  • Jane Austen SAL (December 2017) –because I want to keep up with the readings GAVE UP, I’LL STITCH MY AMENDED BOOKSHELF NEXT YEAR

Too many other things caught my eye! I’m still very pleased with what I have done this year. Not much chance of finishing in the black for this half (altho I did for the first half & should for the whole year) – those Mira 25th Anniversary purchases threw that plan out!

AUGUST – Which is more satisfying to you and why – the process of stitching a piece, or the finish? It’s both by turn – I enjoy the quiet of stitching, the achievement of the finish.

STITCH FROM STASH – thanks in part to some sales, I’m not in as bad a position as I thought. If the person who wants Biancabella does pay, and if I finish Persephone I will end in the black for both the half and (importantly to me) the year. At the least, I resisted spending more this month than just the DMC skeins I ran out of!

Aug-18
  $25.00
Spotlight 7 DMC -11.83
 
Portrait of Antique Vines 11.04
SOLD NC Snapdragon (Maureen) 15.00
   
Rollover -$223.95
Total Available Budget -$184.74

Uh Oh. Prepare for a long one, folks…plus WIP Wednesday #218

It’s been quite a while since I last wrote. I have no real excuse, just a general malaise with everything. I guess a mild semi-depression that I am working my way out of.

HEALTH – this is the biggie. The growth found on my annual physical in February has now been excised and a biopsy performed. And the best news – it’s benign. I am so relieved. However I couldn’t tell you the last time I went to boot camp & right now, I’m sticking to walking.

WEEK IN THE LIFE – I have completed my album – which was an achievement in itself! I am not happy with the volume of notes I made, & luckily I have enough in the way of embellishments that I can repeat the exercise in November (before December Daily). Ali’s newest Travel collection is somewhere in the NZ Post system so I hope to get that later this week. Photo post to come!

TRAVELLING – We’ve done a few small trips lately, as you would know if you followed my Instagram. We tried to get to a car wrecker in Whangarei the other weekend but due to an accident (no fatalities but two hours on a 2km stretch of road was frustrating) we couldn’t get there before closing. We ended up staying at Lang Beach, just south of Waipu Cove & did a lot of exploring around Whangarei. I also caught up with a previous workmate Jill, who has Si’s total admiration for sailing around the world (multiple times as long term readers will know) and not killing her husband in tight confines. Last Saturday we got up early, drove up & found the bumper we needed for the Toy Car – and the targa glass panels and covers & some other bits too! Also if you’ve coveted one, I can confirm that a Blunt umbrella is awesome. I got myself the Karen Walker limited edition, as it’s pretty and the odds that the boys will want to be seen using it are low!

OTHER STUFF – the Auckland Photography exhibition is on and Rory, a friend & official Briscoes photographer, has an exhibit on at the Wintergarden Café by the Auckland museum. His theme is birds & flowers & there were some pretty things.

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I went to a number of NZ Comedy Festival events – the 7 Days live screening with Louise, Paul Choudry with Si & then Lou treated us to Jamie Bowen – whose surprise guest was Dai Henwood. It wasn’t comedy as such, more a discussion around a wide range of ideas/events, but it still had laughs and things to ponder. I liked it.

20180530_173025I cleaned and re-stocked the big tank. Tubbs is happier! I do have the smaller tank still set up, much to Si’s disgust, and I think I will get some more mollies and a betta for this one – plus a new light. It needs a light desperately, now its winter and the sunshine hours have reduced.

READING – a lot of trash interspersed with some good writing. June/July looks good for me, with a lot of my fav authors released or releasing for the Northern Summer. I read the latest Rosalind James as part of the pre-release group; there’s a Nalini Singh Psy-Changling & a Tracey Alvarez Bounty Bay next week, a Kirsten Ashley Chaos & Eloisa James Wilde in July, and two LH Cosway to come (all pre-ordered to my Kindle). I had forgotten about the last two Nora Roberts releases so they’re on my Kindle now too.

20180519_065758Non-fiction has been Brene Brown & “The Year of Less” by Cait Flanders & “Slow” by Brooke McAlary. I brought Si “Spymistress” by William Stevenson for Audible and he recommends that one.

I also brought Cocktales, not for the writing but because of the cause. If you are not a romance writer you may be unaware of the huge uproar over a certain author deciding to trademark a word, which in this instance was “cocky”. Her reasons are as shallow as a bird bath is to the ocean, and multiple organisations are now funding the court battle against her, including an union organisation for authors. I don’t believe any one person can TM a commonly used word (it’s not like Xerox or Hoover, where the brand is now also the action) & I think her actions were malicious in intent.

STITCHING – I haven’t stitched all that much since I wrote. 8 instances on the LHN Summer Band Sampler got me to a finish; then 5 sessions on a new start, home*stitch*ness Four Seasons (New Zealand) version which I have quickly fallen out of love with (I think it’s the Cashel fabric, it’s not evenweave & very scratchy); two beading sessions on Mill Hill’s Honey Pot so those are now glued onto felt and ready to cut out as FFO’s; and at work/travel I am working on the two Trinidad Santa’s from last year’s Mill Hill/Sandra Cozzolino release. I’m up to the fiddly parts & making sure thread doesn’t carry on the back of the plastic canvas version. And at home I’m back in love with Fairy Idyll and nearly done with the greenery at the base of the rabbit. My round robin also came back; I need to stitch the square left & bead it all but that’s a budgeted finish for when I’m a little tired of FI.

STITCH FROM STASH – I had my first “no purchase” month in quite some time. This at least brought me back from the brink & I finished in the positive. I’ve also sold (for the same price as I paid) the second copy I had of the Mirabilia Cinderella design so this month looks good too.

Apr-18 May-18
Budget $25.00 Budget $25.00
Melinda – 4*mags -11.04    
Andie – OOP Miras -40.00    
home*stitch*ness 4 Seasons -9.81    
Spotlight Cashel FQ -34.99    
Spotlight 10 DMC -16.90    
       
Melinda’s RR Gigi 12.56 SOLD Angel of Christmas 10.00
Countrystitch Credit (dye) 4.44 LHN Summer Sampler 14.63
LK Be Bold 9.25    
       
Rollover $25.20 Rollover -$36.29
Total Available Budget -$36.29 Total Available Budget $13.34

WIPOCALYPSE QUESTIONS: I’ll post these in the June entry. I need to make sure I post more regularly!

thanks for reading!

March WIPocalypse

WIPocalypse is hosted by Mel at her blog http://measi.net/measiblog/ ; it’s my favourite SAL, mostly due to the host organisation (which is spot on), the range of topics & the wide variety of stitchers participating. There’s always something to oooh over! Click on the link to the right.

March Focus:

  • Mira RR piece – started, I hates it
  • CAYR SAL – started Satsuma Stocking #3, the reindeer one
  • Flosstube update – Feb’s uploaded in the first week of March

Yep. March came in and stole my stitchy bug. The weave on the RR piece is very tight (32ct opalescent that was then dyed) and I am not enjoying my progress. I have to wear the reading glasses and work short stints, or my head aches. And bc my reading glasses are so focussed, I can’t do my usual and stitch along to Flosstube, as I can’t even focus on the (very large) TV across the room. It’s going to be a daylight only, headphones on, gripping audiobook to get me to the finish line here. I managed maybe 5-6 thread lengths yesterday. Or the skirt train bit, if you’re more visual.

With our Sydney trip happening mid-month, most of my external, non-work, focus was on this. Extra grocery shopping, paying bills early, getting out of my laundry cycle – none of this helped with stitching! This trip was just Si & myself, and we crammed heaps into the two days in Sydney then tried to do a lot of the things on the cruise ship, so even tho I took Fairy Idyll, even she didn’t see much progress. Still, as Katy says, every stitch completed is a stitch closer to the finish. As always, hover or click for captions.

Coming back has been full on too, with a couple of work projects and the netball – Si & I attended night two of the Taini Jamieson Trophy games. Next for these teams is the Commonwealth Games in the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia – we’ll be there for Tag later in the year. FWIW Jamaica won the trophy this year.

April Focus:

  • Finish the Mira RR piece
  • Continue with the Satsuma Stocking
  • FFO a 2017 ornament into a flat fold
  • March Flosstube update – even tho it’s going to be very short!

 

SFS – still in the black! The Stash Unloading things I brought on 01/03 still haven’t arrived, so a refund has been supplied, but the Lizzie Kate charts I brought (Red White & Beach and Be Bold & Brave) did. I didn’t manage to carve out the time to get to Crewel Gobelin but as the bug is missing, I wasn’t too upset. Today I brought two “oddball” cuts from Catherine at Countrystitch – because they are unusual cut lengths left when processing orders, she sells the pieces at a discount. I’ll have about 4” to each side of the Renaissance Mermaid but that’s perfectly fine with me!

Mar-18
Budget $25.00
Jodi – HOD Latte Love -6.76
Jodi – Stitching Feeds my Heart -15.21
Countrystitch Orphan A6 Bourbon -37.67
Countrystitch Orphan A9 Cook Strait -19.93
LK Red White & Beach -12.43
LK Be Bold & Brave -12.43
Refund Supplied Jodi 21.97
Countrystitch Credit 6.09
Rollover $76.57
Total Available Budget $25.20

March 25 – What newer designers and product creators (fabric or floss dyeing, etc) out there have you discovered and recommend? I’m not sure I’ve discovered anyone completely “new”! For fabric dyeing, I obviously love Catherine’s products as the DMC comp is spot on to the actual fabric that arrives, and she allows for shrinkage when she calculates your actual fabric size. Try Countrystitch if you’re looking for something different.

On Etsy, I like Satsuma St, Jenny @ Home*stitch*ness & Stitchrovia. None are completely “new” either but one thing I know about stitching – my tastes change, & every designer has merit.