Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Totally Annoyed

Two posts in one day! Maybe I am on a roll!

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas. Our Christmas was perfect. The BBQ was delicious and I made an extra big pot of chili beans so there would be plenty left over in case the BBQ ran out! I sat and stitched and Harold tinkered with his toys while waiting for the snow. The snow finally arrived late Christmas evening and continued on through the next day. Harold and I decided to wait a while on our gifts because neither of us were really sure about what we wanted. We both have way too much stuff anyway!

With Harold being home, I haven't had quite as much time to stitch but I try to pick it up while we watch the evening news. Here is an updated photo (actually I am farther along than this now). As I mentioned before, I joined the Crazy January Challenge but more for incentive than anything else. I went through my stash and filled a basket with a lot more than 15 charts! How could I just choose 15 when I have so many waiting to be done? For now, my plans are to work mainly with my present stash and try to limit buying extras. I will pull them out to work on as I go along. They mostly range in size from medium to large. I will introduce them as I start and just let each one be a surprise. I like surprises!

I want to finish up AWWR and hopefully several more before March or April which is when I usually take some of past years work in for framing. I do some of it myself but I like to have the special ones professionally framed. Last year, I took in 4 and I would like to take in as many as 6 this time. It's pretty much a once a year thing so I look forward to it so I can see my wall fill up. My goal of having AWWR finished by the end of 2010 is looking dim but I think I can wind it up by the middle of January.

Here comes the totally annoyed part of this post. I decided to pull out some of my WIPs to set aside for working on this coming year. I knew of several in particular I wanted to see finished. Upon going to my WIP basket, I discovered they were gone! I started going through drawers, closets and anyplace else I could think of they might be hiding but no luck. Where did they go? Who took them from their basket? No one wants to admit to the dirty deed or just doesn't remember doing it. I have learned a valuable lesson from this -- no more WIPs! I have to finish what I start or take the chance of losing it entirely!

Thanks so much for stopping by! Your visits and comments always make my day brighter!

Almost Gone

This is the same post I make at the end of each year with a few changes here and there to suit the time of my life. It may get old to some but it works for me.

A New Year is right around the corner! A brand new clean calendar! It's up to each one of us what we do with it. Each year I make the same goals with a possible extra or two tossed in for good measure. I prefer to use "goals" instead of "resolutions" because I feel that I am taking already important things in my life and putting my focus on strengthening them.

1. To make an effort to learn something new every day. The joy of knowledge is indeed a blessing no matter what you choose to learn.

2. To make time for myself. It's amazing what 15 minutes sitting on the deck with a hot cup of coffee and watching the birds can do for my soul. A little time each day to refresh my spirit is all it takes.

3. To take time to appreciate each day. Too often we forget to see the beauty around us and take the simple things in life for granted. My continued goal is to look with my eyes but to see with my heart. To simply enjoy life and all that is a part of it.

4. To enjoy my family and friends. I am lucky to have each and every one of them in my life. I have been blessed with so many online friends and each day I am grateful for each one of you! My online stitching and blogging friends are a very important part of my life!

5. Organize and Simplify! Two key words I always yearn to make a part of my everyday routine but often lose focus on. Organize doesn't mean I have to go on a cleaning rampage each day. It just means I need to get my life and things that are a part of my life in some of manageable order so that I feel comfortable instead of constantly overwhelmed. Not putting things off until the last minute can contribute greatly to this cause! Simplify! Just what it means - plain and simple! Stop making a mountain out of a mole hill, do what I can and leave the rest, don't volunteer for more than I feel I can handle or feel will stress me out!

6. To Remember. So many people have come and gone from my life over the recent years and I want to keep their memory alive.

7. To keep my faith alive and strong.

And of course the New Year just wouldn't be complete without a few just plain fun goals!

1. Take more trips. Even day trips can be fun.

2. No pressure. Keep the fun and joy in stitching. This is why I started in the first place! I actually have several special projects planned for this year but will keep them a secret until I start.

3. Take more pictures.

4. I would like to work occasionally on some family history this year and get that in albums for all to enjoy.

5. Get back into life! Period. Plain and simple.

6. Work on home improvements. We have plenty to choose from!

Have a safe New Year's Eve! Thanks for stopping by! Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas!

It has been a different Christmas around here this year. No tree. No decorations. No stockings hung on the fireplace mantle. No lights. After missing Thanksgiving (because of a family matter that sort of took the wind out of our Christmas sails), the mood to pull everything out just never took hold. Luckily our kids are grown so there are no sad little faces to contend with (oh, wait! I forgot about my DH and his look of disappointment). I have already promised that next year will be much better. That gives me one year to stock up food for the cupboards and take care of some home repairs so the new repairs help show off the decorations. Isn't it funny how so many of us start planning for the next Christmas decorations and food often before the present Christmas has even come and gone. I already have ideas dancing around for next year!

I have a bad habit of hitting the after Christmas sales with one or two items in mind but end up coming home with lots of marked down holiday decorations! Not this year. I will not let myself fall into that trap again. I have already cleared out, thrown away or given away a lot of excess decorations and I still have enough. Probably too much. I want next year to be simple so I doubt I use all that I still have!

We discussed Christmas dinner. Should I cook since I missed doing Thanksgiving this year or should we stick with our tradition of bringing in enough BBQ to last Christmas Eve evening through Christmas day? We decided to stick with tradition. We had anticipated this earlier in the year and have been trying out new places since our old favorite BBQ place had closed down. We found a place that was worthy of our picky taste for it. Not just any old BBQ will do for us and this restaurant suited both of our tastes.

I picked up several items on my year to year Christmas list. I always buy a loaf of Pecan Raisin bread from the bakery. It is so good served warm with some cream cheese spread on top! One of my yearly holiday indulgences! Then I like to look for inexpensive holiday coffee mugs. I have a cabinet full but I found another to add with a simple cardinal on it.

Once more I would like to wish a Merry Christmas to all of my dear blogging and stitching friends. Some of you are new friends and others I have known for quite awhile. I look forward to spending another year of friendship with you all! Thank you all for touching my life and making it more special.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Peeking In

DH is home on vacation and I had a few minutes to drop in and say hi to everyone! There hasn't been as much stitching as I hoped lately and I am beginning to wonder if I will get AWWR finished by the end of the year. I am going to keep pushing for that goal anyway.

It has been busy around here. Thanks to Harold, I had the most perfect birthday! I couldn't have asked for a better birthday! We went out (as planned) and did some needed errands then off to shop for my birthday present.

Since I love and collect Santas, I have had my eye on this Boyd Santa (on the left) for awhile. It was still at the store and to make things even better, it was marked down 50%. Then I found this thimble Santa by Tom Clarke in NC (on the right). I collect a few of his figures and I love his thimble gnome collection since I also collect thimbles. Another wonderful surprise when I found that he, too, was marked down 50% plus he is an edition #1. Triple the surprises! I am rebuilding my Santa collection since over the years many have been broken or just gotten raggy. These are wonderful additions to my new start!

After lunch, we drove across the state line to the LNS where I get some pieces framed. I had a birthday coupon and was looking for just the right thing to get. I couldn't find what I wanted until I went through the sale bin and found God Bless Us Everyone by The Primitive Needle marked down to $2.50! I have been wanting this pattern and the price was definitely right!

Then off to eat at my favorite winter time restaurant for Chicken and Dumplings! Yes, I said winter time restaurant! Their food is delicious but just a little too heavy for those hot summer days yet perfect for the cold days of winter! On cold evenings, they always have a fire burning in their mammoth fireplace to help make everything even more cozy!

Yesterday's weather was beautiful! Sunny skies and warmer than recent temperatures. We got ready today to finish off our errands and do some shopping, opened the door to leave and we saw the biggest, fattest snowflakes falling! It didn't last more than an hour but it beautiful coming down!

Thanks for stopping by. Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Past

It's been a few days since I last posted. No stitching for me since last post. I got some sort of bug and have been fighting getting over it. I think the fever broke last night so maybe I am on the mend.

We had snow flurries earlier this week! It was so fun to see everyone at our house get excited over the few flakes! Snow always brings out the kid in about everyone!

We have been having temperatures as low as 9 degrees and highs topping off at 34 degrees. The term Artic Blast is mild! Our temps haven't been as cold as other places but too cold for us non the less.

During the holiday season, I tend to remember things that always make my heart warm. Usually memories of past Christmases. This time I thought about the year my Dad bought a race car set to put up around the tree. What girl gives a hoot about something this? But I loved it because each evening after he got home from work we would sit under the tree and race our cars round and round the track! Together time. It was only put out when the tree went up so it became a Christmas tradition. The tradition of time well spent together laughing and enjoying each others company.

DH will be taking Friday off as part of my birthday present, then we will be going out to shop around, maybe hit the LNS and on to the restaurant for Chicken and Dumplings! I can taste them now! These are as good as my Grandma made and hers could really make my taste buds dance!

Harold will begin his two week Christmas vacation soon so I probably won't be getting online very much while he his home. No special plans. Just watching some movies together while I stitch and he putters around with his hobby.

I want to go ahead and wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year now in the event I get busy. I am sure I will pop in occasionally but it doesn't hurt to say it more than once! Hopefully I will have more to share next time! Thanks for stopping by. Your visits and comments always make my day!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

So Cold!

I have been taking it easy the past several days due a fall I had the other night. Sounds like I am a total clutz, huh? It was late at night and I got up, not fully awake. My broken toe hasn't helped my balance very much so when I came around the corner, I ran into the dresser and ka-boom, down I went, hard! I've been pretty sore so not much movement for me which gives me a real good excuse to sit and stitch. To be honest though, I think I would rather come up with my own excuse than falling like that again!

I had hoped to finish up AWWR by the middle of the month and even have time to do another simple stitch by the end of the year! Big expectations, huh! I am thinking now that I will be doing good to finish off AWWR by the years end deadline just by its self! I am working on the two decorative line borders that come between the alphabet section and the pictorial design. So far there has been no frogging or even a minor mistake so I am happy.

Brrrrrrr. These frigid temps will really take a bite out of you when you step outside! The past few mornings have been in the single digits. No snow yet and just a tiny bit of sleet that didn't last long enough to do any damage to our already icy spirits. Over the warm summer months, you tend to have memories of those cold winters past but the memories are nothing until it rolls around again to remind you "hey, remember me? I'm Winter and I didn't want you to forgot me!". Even the sky looks cold. I have my coat, my mittens, my warm hat and my scarf to wrap around my neck then my face but that darn cold still manages to burrow through the yarn and do it's frosty magic on me! Days like these my coffee pot works over time so I will have a hot mug of joe to warm up with.

I don't like posting without a picture but sometimes it just happens! Thanks so much for stopping by! I always enjoy your visits and comments!

Monday, December 06, 2010

It's Monday

After a day of grocery shopping, running errands and sloshing around in the rain and sleet I came home totally exhausted to find a package waiting on me. After putting the groceries away, I collapsed in my chair with the package! I was so thrilled to see it contained goodies from Santa Edgar! Some of his wonderful chocolate covered cherries (which my son promptly claimed as his own), yummy homemade Peach Jam (which thrilled my peach loving DH) and some of that delicious white chocolate bark that I love so much! It was the perfect end to an exhausting day! Thank you dear friend!

What with a busy weekend, feeling icky due to the weather and my broken toe caused by not looking where I was going there was no stitching for me this weekend. I decided to just rest. I did pick up some more threads so I won't run out while working on it.

I have been changing my mind almost every day about what 15 charts I want to stitch for the Crazy January Challenge! I wanted to work on a lot of designs I already have in my stash. I had 15 picked then thought I might to do more seasonal designs since I have so few of these done. I hate the thought of doing a beautiful cross stitch only to put it out once a year so I will choose a wall for these so that they can remain out year round. After all, our home decor is that of older Christmas colors and my Santa collection remains out year round also. My average number of yearly finishes is between 5-7 designs so I will be really pushing my needle to knock out more! Not all 15 will be seasonal but I am thinking there will now be more than first planned!

*update* I have my 15 charts planned out. Several will have to be ordered but will be well worth it! I will post them at a later time. Most of them will be small to medium but I may sneak in a larger one every so often!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I always enjoy your visits and comments. Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart!

Friday, December 03, 2010

Baby, It's Cold Outside!

The Farmer's Almanac had predicted an early, cold winter for us and I think they hit it on the head once again! We have had some bitter cold temps! No snow for us yet but as I recall, we got hit by the white stuff pretty hard last year, so that's ok by me. Several mornings this week, I have stepped out early in the morning (pre-coffee oriented) only to take a second look because the frost looked like a dusting of snow.

As I promised, here is an update of AWWR by Shakespeare Peddler. I am just loving the flow of stitching on this piece. I need to go pick up some more floss this weekend so I don't run out in the middle of this project!

I still haven't even pulled out any of our Christmas stuff yet! The wind outside has been so strong, I decided to wait so that decorations aren't flying around the neighborhood. Indoor decorations, well I guess that's just been laziness on my part.

Thanks so much for stopping by! Until next time, may you have simple days and an uncluttered heart.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Will Sing For Food

My people pie vents are picky about what kind of food they will sing for but they will really belt out a steamy tune for the right kind of pie! But this time, I'm not sure if they are singing or looking at me in shock because I have signed up for the Crazy January challenge! Yikes! What have I done! I have pulled my 15 projects for the challenge but as stitchers, we all know these can change without warning. I doubt seriously I get all of the pulled designs finished up by year's end but maybe this will give me a good kick in the back side to do more!

A Weary World Rejoices is coming right along at a good pace. I will share another picture soon. I am saving the border for last this time.

Happy December! I have another birthday coming up later this month. No numbers (although I know some family and friends know!). As usual, no special plans for it. I like for DH to take the day off, spend the day being lazy and then go out to eat for my favorite comfort food -- chicken and dumplings!

Thanks for stopping by! I always enjoy your visits and comments!