Sunday, January 27, 2013

WIPocalypse, January 2013

How is winter going for you? We had a rare (for here) ice storm on Thursday and while we do pretty well driving around in the snow, driving on ice slicked roads was a whole new story. When I got into my car to commute to work the traffic reports were saying that the roads were icey, drive slow, but passable. 40 minutes into my commute (and the usual time it take me to get to work) I'd barely passed the halfway point and the traffic reports had changed their tune. Stay home if you can! Delay your drive for at least 2 hours!  It was too late for me and traffic had come to a full and complete stop.  It was stop and creep the rest of the way into work. All total it took 2 hours and 20 minutes to go 36 miles.

Since I finished up the Owls Birth Record last week, it was time for a return of an old friend.  I put a couple of hours of work on Heirloom Nativity Sampler by The Victoria Sampler.  As a reminder, I'm stitching it with the specified flosses, over 2 on 28 count Delft Blue linen.

I did some more mindless stitching on Poinsettia House by Country Cottage Needleworks of the Santa's Village Collection.  I filled in the red stripes and then did a few snowflakes.  This is being promoted to the at work project.  I might be able to keep up with the houses if I can work on this for 30 minutes everyday at lunch.

And since I'm crazy, I've got a new start.  Valentines day is one of my least favorite holidays and yet every year I manage to stitch something heart related for it.  This year I'm stitching up a freebie that's on the Welchet site.  It's by Tempting Tangles and called 2013 Valentine.  I'm stitching it over 2 on 32 count White Opalecent linen with two strands of WDW's Love.  I picked up the thread a while ago because it was pretty.  I'm glad to be using it on a project.

I've knocked off another 27.93 miles from the 1000 mile challenge.  That means I've walked 115.38 thus far this year and have 884.62 more miles to go. Keen!  I've also seen the lowest reading on the scale in forever.  163.8.  Yes, it's still overweight, but much better than where I started out a couple of years ago.

Here's hoping that this upcoming week is better in the stitching and commuting department.  The forecast has many days of snow.  So long as the freeways are kept clear and everyone keeps their head while driving, it shouldn't be too bad.

Hugs and Stitches,

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

A weeks worth of stitching

Well... it was really a weeks worth of thinking about stitching.  With all the errands that needed to be run on Saturday and Church and family things on Sunday I was barely able to put any stitching in.  Quite depressing really.

Wednesday night was Crafty-Stitchy night with the girls and I took along Lavender Pansies to work on.  We had a good time chatting about this and that, eatting too many chocolate muffins, and I worked along on my cross stitch, LMS worked on her hardanger angel, and LBH put together a couple of scrapbook pages. Pure girly bliss.  While the pansies aren't looking like much of anything yet, I'm really pleased with the progress that 2 hours of stitching was able to accomplish.

One evening I came home from the gym and all that and put an hour into Poinsettia House for Santa's Village.  It felt good to sit in the rocking recliner and stitch away on the red and white stripe at the top.  So simple, so easy, not a lot of brain power required.  It looks like the Post Office will be released here in the next week or so, and onto my list of things to order from 123 Stitch it goes.

Little baby girl arrived on Tuesday this past week.  Brother-B and SIL-A chose the name we liked best for her.  I finished up the stitching on her birth record Sunday afternoon.  All I have left to do is add her name, birthdate, and stats.  Then I will be done with these silly owls.  This is the last picture you will see of it since I don't want to do another and color out her name.

Niece-L has been a good baby, as far as I can tell.  I'm told she eats pretty well, sleeps soundly, and when she's awake and not hungry is a happy and content little thing.  I got to hold her for a little bit on Saturday while her parents had a quick dinner.  I figured it'd be easier for them to eat if some one else held the baby for a while.  She's just a cute little thing.

As I have been reading blogs and shop newsletters two new items have come up that I'm excited to stitch, but at the same time I'm thinking "No! Oh no!"  If you're like me and have more stash then time you know what I'm talking about.

First up is Lizzie*Kate's Jingles series of flip its.  All Christmasy and they all fit together into one bit banner.  I love L*K designs and so I want to stitch these up really really badly.

And the second item is a Spring Mystery Sampler that Blue Ribbon Designs is putting out.  I don't normally stitch their designs, but the sneak peek is so springy and pretty.  I really want to stitch it up this year too!

Too many patterns, not enough time!  But hey, remember what I often say:  Buy the pattern, buy the dream!

Hugs and Stitches,

Purple Nails

Yes, yes, yes.  I haven't done a nail post in awhile... not that they were/are a major part of this blog so that's okay.  I'm still cheerfully on about my new little obsession.  I haven't had any brilliant ideas so I haven't been taking many photos, but I did a series over the past week that I really liked.  I found a purple that I really like.  It looks good with my complexion and I'm tempted to just wear it all the time!

First off I paired it with a purple/purple glitter on my tips.  The contrast wasn't too much and I really enjoyed it.  Mr. Trainer teased me about being all purple so he did notice.

Since my nailes are really bendy I can only get a two days wear in before the polish (which isn't bendy) starts to chip and flake off.  So Friday evening I took the polish off of all the nails that were too chipped (all but pinkie fingers) and simply threw on a plain coat of Amatyst Ablaze.

Sunday evening I added tips of Sinful Colors Frenzy (I think) to my right hand.  I just free handed them in a sloppy whatever goes sort of fashion.  I was seeing a bit of tip wear, so it was more just to cover the tips since the rest of the polish was holding on pretty good.  And I can't take a good picture of my right hand with my left hand.  I tried and tried and tried and this fuzzy pic is the best one I managed!

Then on my left hand I did a single coat of Frenzy over the whole nail.  It doesn't really hide the tip wear, but I'm enjoying the little turquoise and pink glitters.  I'm probably the only one who does notice tip wear so for the next few days, and until the polish chips off full scale, I'm going with it.

Last week I also wore a white base with a blue crackle on top.  It was definately a fun one and scored points with Mr. Trainer for being Cowboys colors.  I bought a purple and mauve crackle top this weekend at Target and I'm looking forward to wearing them sometime in the up coming weeks.

Now, since the Cowboys really aren't my team and the 49ers are, I'm debating on whether I need to get me some red and gold polishes and do something for the superbowl.  My sister and I are planning our Superbowl party menu.  Which is kind of funny since 1) it's a party of her and I, and 2) we don't get TV so we can't watch the actual Superbowl!  Oh well, that won't stop us from eating unhealthy food, and lots of it.

Hugs and Polish,

1000 mile Cardio Challenge Report and other weight loss things

I still haven't managed to update my Lose to Cruise page for 2013... I guess I'm struggeling with "How many way are there to say I did okay, but not as well as I had hoped I would?"  I'm still making progress on the weight loss thing, a little bit at a time, so that's okay.

I'm having a good time tracking my distance with the help of my fitbit pedometer.  I bought that little guy last November and I love it.  The way they have the dashboard set up to track your progress really works for me.  They award little badges for different distances traveled in a day, stairs climed, pounds lost, and so on and so forth.  I am completely motivated by those dumb little badges.

Fitbit also has a scale the links up wirelessly to your account and I bought one of those things as well.  No more fudging my weight on weigh-day.  It's all put in automatically.  I like this less, but it keeps me more honest with myself.

So far, for the 1000 miles of cardio challenge I've covered 87.45 miles and have 912.55 more miles to walk before hitting the challenge goal.  It looks like I'm still on target to finish up in October... Provided my current habits don't change much in the next few months.

The other tool I use all the time on the journey is My Fitness Pal.  I use it to track my calories consumed.  I prefer to use the aps they have for my phone than to use the version on the web, but I use both pretty much equally.

There is some overlap in what the tools do, Fitbit has a calorie counter, My Fitness Pal has an exercise tracker, but I feel that Fitbit tracks exercise better than My Fitness Pal and My Fitness Pal does a better job of tracking calories than Fitbit does.  You can link up your accounts so you only have to enter items once.  Although since the Fitbit will wirelessly sync up to your account, I hardly ever type anythign into Fitbit at all.

I think I'm going to update the My Fitness Pal widget to reflect the total weight lost on my journey and the final goal.  Right now it's just looking at what I wanted to lose in 2012, or 40 lbs.  I didn't quite hit that goal, but a loss of 35 lbs in 2012 is nothing to be sneezed at.  Overall I'm down about 65 lbs, to a weight I don't ever recall being.  It feels good.  But there's another 35 lbs to go and then I can switch over to maitanence/vigilance mode.

This past weekend as I was working in the Temple, I looked at myself in the mirror and came to the conclusion that my dress was way too bit for me.  It does have ties, so I can pull it back and it looks okay from the front.  But there's about an extra foot of fabric around my waist.  So Saturday afternoon my sister and I went out and about looking for a new white dress. 

We started at the distribution center and I tried on a dress that I liked.  It fit pretty well except that it was much longer in the torso than I am.  Being a bit on the short side, I knew whatever I bought would have to be hemmed.  We fussed with the dress a bit and figured that it could be taken up at the waist, thus shortening the long torso issue, but that would also mean messing with the zipper and that earned the dress an instant no.

So we went next door to Dressed In White and started trying on a bunch of their dresses.  I found one right off that I liked.  It has the same empire/a-line shape as my current dress and it's not too long in the torso.  It will have to be hemmed before I can wear it and I just need to figure out a good bribe to get LMS to do it for me. We also found a nice cotton top that was on clearance.  I tried that top on with about 4 or 5 different skirts, but didn't like any of the skirts at all.  I bought the top anyway and next week my sister and I will try the White Elegance shop to see what they have on the way of skirts.

Hugs and Dresses,

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Turtle Trot, January

How nice that the Turtle Trot report coincides with the usual Sunday stitching update.  For more information on the turtle trot, click on the picture of a turtle there to the left.  I need to get my list together of what I'll stitch on for the turtle trot, but in all honesty, it pretty much looks exactly the same as the WIPocalypse list.  Maybe I'll just update that tab a little more.

I'm working on the backstitching for the Owls Birth Record.  Little baby girl is due on the 20th and I'm very close to finishing this up.  I'm sure she won't mind if I'm a few days behind her arrival on finishing it up.  Her parents haven't settled on a name for her yet, but they have brought up one that I really like.  I wonder if I stitch that on before she arrives if it will stick...

Things are looking good on Santa's Village.  I've got a start on the Poinsettia house and I'm hoping I counted right!  I'll be way bummed if I come along and figure out that I put the first snowflake in the wrong place because everything else I've done has been counted off of it. 

I think I'll wait until the end to add all the buttons on.  Much safer that way.  I won't be trying to position my hoop away from them.

In other goings on, it's been snowy here again.  And the temperatures have plummeted, again.  It's clear and bright and sunny and about 3 degrees.  Brrrrrrr....  Toby has been having to use the treadmill to get his exercise in.  He doesn't like it so much but is getting better at tolerating it.  I'll try and get a picture of him on the treadmill next time for you to see.

Which reminds me of another little exercise challenge I joined/made up.  It's the 1000 miles of Cardio in 2013 challenge.  I need to put up a tab, or update the Lose to Cruise tab (which needs to be updated anyway) to include this.  It started simply enough, my Aunt decided to go for 1000 miles of Cardio in 2013 and I loved the idea so I 'joined' up.  Then one of my good friends on the Lose to Cruise group joined up to.  It's a great big challenge of 3 people!  You can join too! Anyway... I want to report that thus far in 2013 I have logged 58.64 miles of the challenge and have 941.36 more miles to go.  If I keep at this pace, I should hit the 1000 mile mark sometime in October.  Keen!

Work is going well, I'm getting better and better at knowing what I'm supposed to be doing. And the property managers of the 12 properties I keep the books for are getting better and better at knowing what they're supposed to be doing.  It's got a full range of accounting tasks to do and I really like that.  We are moving our offices to a different building (across the parking lot) so Friday was spent trying to get reports out and packing up the few belongs I had at the office.  It was kind of crazy.

This week is Crafty Stitchy Night with the girls, something I'm looking forward to.

Hugs and Stitches,

TUSAL, January 2013

Last week I mentioned that I had a window sill full of glass trinkets and what not.  So this morning I took a picture of it.

All sorts of cute vases, tea cups, candles, and a couple of the treasures I picked up from Venice while there last summer.  Among all this stuff now lives the TUSAL jar.

And here it is.  I haven't emptied it out from the Orts collected last year, so it's still looking quite full.  I don't think I'll empty them out this year either.  I like that there's more than a few threads floating around at the bottom of the vase and I like that.  Makes me feel like I've actually done something!

If you want to know more about the TUSAL, click on the little button up there to the left under the 2013 SAL header.

Hugs and Stitches,

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Happy New Stitching Year!

It was nice to have a day off of work on the first. My sister and I wandered up to Shepherds Bush to check out their annual sale. I bought some flosses that I needed for the next house of Santa's Village and some pretty Needle Necessities flosses that they were clearing out. I'm thinking I need to find a nice monochromatic design and use the NN flosses on that.

On the way home from Shepherds Bush we stopped off at Ikea and I bought a cute little glass bowl to add to my window sill of pretty glass things. I thought I had a picture of the window sill to share but I don't. I'll have to get one once it warms up a bit and the sun shines more.

Anyway... I was able to work quite a bit on Santa's Village since I had the day off. I fixed up all the oopsies I made on it last week and kept on stitching. This little house is taking me much longer than I thought it would to complete! I hope that's not indicative of all the other houses to come.

I've been plugging away on the little Owls birth record.  Maybe today I'll get it done.  I'm looking forward to working on the Heirloom Nativity Sampler again.

And at the very end of 2012, I managed to get a finish in for the year.  I put the last stitch into Very Scary, the mystery sampler that Lizzie*Kate designed over the summer.  I'm really pleased with how my bottom border came out. 

After I took Very Scary off the Stitchmate, Flower Power went back on.  Another project that I'm looking forward to working on again.

I've updated my list of WIP's for the continuing WIPocalypse and you can click on the graphic there on the left to find out more about it.  I'm working on updating my other tabs and adding one for the Turtle Trot and my finishes from 2012.  I sort of fell off the wagon last summer when it came to posting updates on my SAL's when I came back from Italy.  I'm hoping to do better this year.

Hugs and Stitches,