Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Christmas Stocking #1 - finished!

I had hopes to finish this for Christmas 2013, but it just wasn't meant to be. The usual busy-ness of the Christmas season plus a packed schedule for a Christmas choral concert just didn't leave me with enough time.

This is an interesting pattern. When I ordered it, I thought it would be cross stitch. I was a little intimidated by the stiff canvas, wool thread, and simple diagonal stitches. I finally started stitching it in Novemeber, and was surprised at the quick progress I made. Despite that, I was less than halfway done on New Year's Day.

I didn't use the included felt. It always confuses me as to why anyone would want the back of their work exposed. This is not just a wall hanging. It is meant to be stuffed full on Christmas morning.

 The part that makes me happy? Done! Linking this post to SewCalGal's
Handmade Christmas Challenge.

Friday, March 7, 2014

A Lovely Year of Finishes March goal

So, do you remember this post? Yeah, those goals have been untouched. So, I'm keeping it simple. My only goal that I'll set it to lay out and fuse the applique pieces for the Bionicle quilt. It has been sitting around for a long time, and obviously this is a mental block for me. Watch for a post showing that I got it done at the end of this month! A Lovely Year of Finishes

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Make Your Story Bloom



That's my current title for this quilt. I love it. The quilting turned out great, even though there are some flaws (which I know I'm really the only one that can see them). Free motion quilting is still fairly new to me, so I love it.







This was from the Modern Quilt Guild Madrona Road Challenge. Our guild decided to limit it to mini quilts. I really wanted to use the fabric as the inspiration for the design. I thought about a castle or roads, but settled on some modern flowers.














The yellow and blue flowers and the leaves are hand appliques using a freezer technique I found at (well, I looked through my browser history, and I can't remember anymore). I pulled the paper out when I had sewn most of the way around. The stems were cut on the bias, then pressed with the seam allowance underneath. I pinned them in the shape I wanted, then stitched them down.






I really enjoyed playing with different textures. I so glad I was brave enough to attempt the roots in the "soil." You can still read the text, which I love. The pebbling in the blue flower gave just the effect I was hoping for.









The back side is so fun to look at.





 For the first time, I quilted with my feed dogs up on my Bernina. Eureka! No more tension issues that I had with the last quilt. I used a super slider, taped down on the edges so it wouldn't flip up, and set the stitch length and width to 0. If you haven't tried it, you should! I can't wait to free motion my next quilt.



Tuesday, May 7, 2013

May UFO Goals!

I have been slowly working on my UFOs, and I want to participate in Fiber of All Sorts and Sew Bittersweet Design's "A Lovely Year of Finishes" challenge. So, my goals for this month are:

Put together the center panel of the Bionicle quilt. It has been sitting in pieces for a couple months.
Getting to that point would put a completed top much closer.















My second main goal is getting a sleeve onto my Madrona Road challenge quilt, so I can actually hang it! A full post on this beauty will be coming soon.









Bonus:
Finish the pink & purple dresses for the girls. One mostly needs hemmed and a zipper. The other has yet to be cut out.

Finish a block or two of the Farmer's Wife sampler. It's been waiting a long time to get started!


PS Don't be alarmed if the pictures look different in the next couple of days. I just got my new camera today, as my old one had broken.  The color was all wrong, and the image was distorted with lines across everything. Daylight meant a whited out picture. The new camera is awesome, but I want daylight to take some proper pics of these projects!



A Lovely Year of Finishes

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Time for a review of last year's goals. Yeah, didn't do all that I had planned, but I did do some. New goals to come, with more frequent review of how I'm doing.



Child of God:
read the entire Bible
Done. Not in the 90 days that I had hoped, but finished nonetheless.
read the Book of Mormon (multiple times? or read at least 20min/day?)
Nope. Not even close. Scripture study was spotty for most of the year.
read the Relief Society lessons each month  
Haha. I don't think I even read one.

Wife:
(keeping these goals private)

Mother:
help my Scouts earn their next ranks
Success with David and Sam. No Progress with Jacob
help Anna learn to read 
We've been pretty consistent with bedtime stories and scripture study, so I'll call this a success
potty train Zeke and Lydia  
Got 1 of 2, but I won't beat myself up over it
help Zeke learn all his letters, numbers and some sounds  
He has gone beyond this and now knows about 30 sight words
get kids to all Dr needed (this is more than just check-ups)  
A definite success here. This has kept me very busy!

Visiting Teacher:
100%
Huge fail here!

Housekeeper:
deep clean house  
Nope - at least there are multiple areas that still need some serious attention
do weekly cleanings  
Nope, and it shows



Repairman:
repair all the currently known issues, including: light switch, broken door, mirror, mixer
Nope. Sigh.
Begin kitchen remodeling  
Still working on getting a plan worked out & drawn up by a professional

Cook:
start making sourdough bread
I did make some starter, but I have yet to actually use it. I have to fix this soon!
dinner by 6pm
Fail for most days of the year. And this is a serious problem.



Blogger:
3 posts each week  
Way too ambitious. I barely did that in an entire year.

Bookkeeper:
reconcile all accounts  
Nope
update accounts weekly  
Nope
create a budget we can follow  
Nope

Daughter/Sister:
call at least 2x/month  
Didn't call even every month, I think.

Friend:
participate in a social group (book club? sewing club?)
I tried to start one up, but it quickly died. A friend wants to try again this year.

Artist:
Finish at least 30 projects, focusing on ones previously started  
Hmmm. I think I finished 4 or 5?


Student:
Read 30 books, including at least 12 classics
I read 23 books, with 3 or 4 classics. Not quite there, but not too bad.

Individual:
Aerobic exercise at least 3x/week 
Improved on this goal - I started lifting weights with the husband 2x/week
Eat more fruits and vegetables  
Probably not, and this goal needs to be more concrete.

Friday, December 14, 2012

I Ran (yes, really) in a Virtual Race

I got inspired by a friend's blog I follow, Taking It On, to run in her annual virtual race - Jingle Bell Hell. The requirements were simple: had to be at least 5k, be challenging, and I had to laugh at some point.

So first, the total mileage that I ran/walked: somewhere around 3.5+ miles. I walked probably about 1/4 of the time. This was 42 laps at our YMCA including warmup and cool down. Since the only real running I've done in a long time is the Jog-A-Thon at the kids' school in September, this was HARD. I have never called myself a "runner." My walking laps were spent panting, and towards the end, trying to keep my stomach calm. My "training" for this consisted of 3x/week Zumba classes and 2x/week weight lifting. Which is not the same thing as running. At all. I timed myself for an overall count of 35 laps (about 3 miles), and that took me 35 minutes. Not fast. At all.

 Yeah, I'm sure I looked somewhat like this. Except white. And take away all the muscles.



So, the laughing. I wish I could say that I laughed out loud. I didn't. I didn't have enough breath to. But I did smile and do a voiceless laugh more than once. The first was around lap 12. I was convinced that I was absolutely crazy for even attempting this. Was I even going to finish? I think some people as they saw my face wondered if I was going to pass out. I know it got flushed more than once. What really surprised me, though, was that by mile 3, breathing actually started to get a little easier. I couldn't get my legs to move much faster, but I wasn't dieing (as much) during my jogging laps. The walking laps got much worse instead. Second laugh was when I decided that I was done jogging. I totally did it! I did more than 3.5 miles in a total time of about 45 minutes. Hopefully I'll be able to walk tomorrow, but I did much more today than I thought I could. I may have to run again. (Did I just say that?)

Friday, January 6, 2012

UFOs!!!!


I'm surrounded by them! I've counted about 100. Yikes!

For the uninitiated, UFO = UnFinished Object. That means some sort of project that was started (or in my case, about to be started), but not completed. The list includes:

5 Block-of-the-Month Quilts. I don't think any have all the blocks completed.
About 30 sets of pajamas. Um, yeah.
13 skirts and dresses for me and the girls.
3 more quilts, 3 x-stitch Christmas stockings, and more.

I hope to make a big dent in this pile this year. I've joined a Facebook group that was created just to encourage each other to finish things this year. I need to be accountable to someone!