Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A Year in Review, Goals, and Resolutions

This might be a long post so grab a cuppa and settle in. Unless you don't like reading my blog and are only here for stitching, which I'll keep at the top of this post.

There hasn't been as much stitching this year as I would have liked, but grad school is over now and we completed our move and got married, so perhaps 2015 will bring more on the stitching front. So the way I'll do this is by project that had progress this year.

Still Life with Parrot (aka Flapping Parrot)

Where I left it in 2013:

Where it is now:

College of Magical Knowledge (aka College)

Where I left it in 2013:

Where it is now:

Library Adventures

I started Library Adventures in 2014 and this is where I got with it:

Greek Mandala

Where I left it in 2013:

Where it is now:

Like I said, not a super huge amount of stitching done, but when I look back at 2014 it was a really busy year. I finished grad school (and I already have my diploma so I know I finished it). Then we moved halfway across the country which was not super fun. I do love to drive, though, and it was fun to see so much of the US. We made it right before the huge flooding hit the south and southwest. And then barely a month later we got married, followed by a trans-Atlantic honeymoon. Busy busy busy! So really, I only worked on three projects, but 2015 will be the year of stitching, and with any luck, the year of at least one BAP finish!

Stitching Goals for 2015:

-Finish College of Magical Knowledge
-Finish Curl Up QS
-Try to finish Secret Stitching
-Mario through page 21
-Finish Riding the Wave
-3 Pages of Medieval Shelf
-Middle "Earf" through page 6
-Greek Mandala through part 6
-Flapping Parrot through page 10
-Library Adventures pages 19-23
-Space Traveler through page 9
-10% of Empress
-10% of Stormy
-Rows 1-10 of Trick or Treat
-Finish AAN Halloween SAL

So there you go. I will probably not make it. But that's ok. I'm the sort of person who needs set goals in order to feel accomplished even if I don't make the goals. It gives me something to work towards. I'm pretty excited and determined.

Which brings me to New Year's resolutions. Some of them are pretty stereotypical and some are unique, but they are what they are and here goes.

-Finish a half marathon and start training for a full marathon
-Lose weight (yeah, yeah I know)
-Meditate at least 15 minutes a day
-Knit through my yarn stash
-Finish Skyrim and Assassin's Creed
-Get more organized
-Write more (aiming for 750 words per day)

I went out and bought a hydration belt for my long runs - I have started breaking 7 miles now and running that long without water is murder so I got a nice belt and I'm super excited to run with it - I have a feeling my runs will get better now that I won't be dying of dehydration mid-run.

Last, but certainly not least, I wanted to share a RAK I received from the wonderful and beautiful Crafty Princess

She is delightful, isn't she? Thank you Crafty Princess!

So with that, I'm off to run for a few hours (yup, hours). I wish you all a happy and fabulous 2015. Stay safe, have fun, and happy stitching!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Library Adventures update 5 and College update 66

I have had multiple friends and family members announce that they're pregnant in the last two weeks, so I've been knitting baby blankets like a fiend. But I have also been stitching like a fiend. Library Adventures shows more progress, I think, even though I've put more stitches into College. Either way, here's an update on both.

Library Adventures before:

Library Adventures after:

College before:

College after:

There are about 2790 stitches left in this page of College and 1028 stitches left in this page of Library Adventures. So far I'm on track for finishing this page of College by January 7 and Library Adventures by December 31.

The last couple of days haven't been super awesome. I'm pretty sure I got sick and at the same time got food poisoning so I've been trying to pull myself out of both. So for the past four days I've had a constant tension headache as well as a sinus headache, nausea, ringing in the ears, and just a general feeling of grossness. A friend of mine was also in a bind, needing someone to take care of his dog for three weeks while he went home for Christmas break. He wanted to take his dog with him but his mom wouldn't let her (the dog) into the house, so we took her in. She's very sweet and seems to think she's a cat. But that's just an added responsibility, which I think has contributed to the tension headache. Add caffeine withdrawal symptoms as I haven't had coffee since food poisoning and general symptoms that go hand in hand with not eating for four days and I'm kind of a mess. I went for a short run yesterday and I'm trying to eat again but I still feel a little queasy. Hopefully I'll be back on track in a few days.

Christmas is coming, too, and that's always exciting. We've been cooking for a few days, H³ was on Pierogi making duty, my mom made cheesecake and Bigos, I just started soaking the beans for some Ukranian Barszcz. But there's still a lot more to cook.

Anyway, now that you know way more than you need to about what's going on in my body and my kitchen, I'm going to go be a slug and stitch. Happy stitching, everyone!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Knitting Finish!

As I (think) I mentioned in a previous post, I've been working on a knitting project for my flower girl. I meant to have it done for her for the wedding, but decided I had enough stress with the wedding itself that I would make it for her as a Christmas gift. Her mom said she liked "fancy scarves" so, of course, I had to knit her one.

I purchased the Ibiza Lace Wrap pattern from Knitting Buzz Designs (available on Ravelry) and I used Miss Babs Yazmin in My Kelley with number 3 needles. I also knitted the scarf instead of the wrap as the wrap was far too large for a 9 year old girl.

Here's a picture of us at the wedding, by the way:

She is completely adorable. Best flower girl EVER.

So, naturally, I made her a scarf that made me want to kill myself. H³ was sweet enough to model the finished product.

So handsome!

If you've heard about the rains in California on the news, we made it out okay. The area I live in didn't get hit too hard, but we did get about 3.5 inches of rain in 24 hours.

H³'s car did get broken into this morning, however. They broke the driver's side window and then ran away when the alarm went off. Not that there was anything in there to steal since we don't leave valuables in the car.

So I did some shop therapy and now I'm going to stitch. Will update soon!

Monday, December 8, 2014

College 65 and Library Adventures 4

Updating on two projects today! It's kind of fun working on multiple projects at once. I'm trying to keep up on my "daily quota" of College to finish it in time but I also want to work on my other projects because I love them. So I work on College for a little bit and then move on. So, without further ado, here are the results.

College before:


Just over 2,000 stitches total in on that one and you can see outlines starting to come in. I think it looks pretty neat!

Library Adventures before:

Library Adventures after:

Not as much done on that one but starting to put some more stitches in.

I finally finished the scarf for my flower girl, but I have to block it so once it's done I'll post a photo - likely in next week's post. It came out pretty well but I must say I hate grafting. So I will likely not be doing that again if I can avoid it.

Not much else to report here, I'm sorry to say. Got my informational e-mail about the half-marathon so training is going strong on that. I'm slowly getting better but I've discovered that the secret of my success is in the music I listen to when I run (the Thor 2 and X-Men: First Class soundtracks are particularly good at cutting my times, believe it or not). I'm also trying to figure out this whole inner peace and positivity thing. Sometimes I feel like I've nailed it whereas other times I sit there wondering what it is I'm supposed to do and how. Just gotta keep working on it, I guess!

Happy stitching, everyone!