Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tour de Bookshelf

Although I did quite a bit of stitching this past week, I don't have much exciting to show for it. Just a bit here and a bit more there. So I thought I'd do something a little different today.

LHN's The Bookshelf is one of my Challenge pieces, and I chose it mostly because I love reading. Books are as big of a part of my life as stitching is, if not more so, and most of my life thus far has revolved around literature. So I thought I'd give you a tour of my bookshelves! we go! You might have to click on the pictures to enlarge them to see which books are which...

This bookshelf is kind of a mish-mash of different things. On the second shelf, middle stack, we have my celebrity memoir collection. Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne, Kate Gosselin, Maureen McCormick, Jodie Sweetin. It's a guilty pleasure, and I'm trying to stop, I swear!! To the right of that stack are my Jodi Picoult books. I love her....everything I've read by her has been superb! My all-time favourite book also lives on this bookcase: Eat, Pray, Love. Also notable here is Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, which I haven't read because it scares me!  Other notable appearances here- The Kite Runner, Water For Elephants, The Glass Castle, Anne of Green Gables, and Of Mice and Men....and last, but not least, my all-time favourite book of childhood...Pippi Longstocking.


Another random assortment. A couple of anthologies from school- The Restoration Period and The Romantic Period literature, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, a few Jane Austens, and Twilight!

This shelf houses my Emily Giffin books, another favourite author James Frey (A Million Little Pieces, My Friend Leonard, Bright Shiny Morning), and many reference books, mostly to do with gardening.

This shelf is my favourite. It was my first, and holds all of the books I had to read while I was working on my english degree. All of the great authors live on this shelf- Dickens, Eliot, James, Shakespeare, Johnson, Hemingway...along with a spattering of poetry anthologies and history and psych textbooks. And, just as importantly, all of my Rachael Ray cookbooks live on this shelf as well. She's up there with those authors, in my opinion LOL!

And finally, this is the pile of books I'm reading now- The Happiness Project, and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. I'm not very far into either though because most of my time this past week has been devoted to drooling over McDreamy and McSteamy...yep...Holly lent me the 5th and 6th seasons of Grey's Anatomy......YUMMY!!!!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Crazy January Challenge Wrap-Up: Days 14 and 15!

Project #14: Zippity Do Da- La Da Da

Cute, right? I love this one, it's just so FUN!

Project #15: Noel 2009- A Mon Ami Pierre

I fell in love with this one a couple of months ago when I saw it on a blog somewhere...I finally found it again and when I went to pick up my floss they were out of the called-for colour. So I decided to switch it to a beautiful blue satin floss. I've never worked with satin before and it's quite challenging! But I love love LOVE how nice it looks! I did learn the hard way though that there's no mistake fixing...the entire thread was destroyed. So this will have to be flawless...I think I can...I think I can...I think I can......

A wise friend casually pointed out the other day that I'd have to complete at least one project per month to get this done. I suppose on some level I knew that (logical math...15 projects, 12 know) but I didn't actually connect that in my head I'm working on getting 2 small ones done this month. Perhaps my Quaker pincushion and my red Christmas tree. Just some thoughts.

Thanks for visiting, and have a great night :-)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

ABCs Of Me!

My final two patterns came in the mail today!! YAY! I'm so in love with one of them, Noel 2009...I almost cried when I opened it up and saw how lovely it was! Since I don't have all the right materials to start either of them, I'll have to do a little stitchy shopping tomorrow and update my final two days tomorrow night!

In the meantime, I borrowed this ABCs of Me from several of you...isn't it a quick and fun way to get to know each other?

A - Age: 24

B - Bed size: Double

C - Chore you hate: Taking out the garbage and recycling

D - Dog's name: Cooper

E - Essential start of the day item: Coffee and my toothbrush

F - Favorite color: Blue
G - Gold or Silver: Silver
H - Height: 5'4

I - Instruments you play: I'm terribly non-musical. I played the recorder in grade 3?
J - Job: In a salad bar
K - Kids: Hopefully one day!
L - Living arrangements: In a basement apartment with two roommates, MJ and Erin #3
M - Music you love: Anything by Johnny Reid
N - Nicknames: Jode, Jodes, Jodster, Little Bear (and Cooper is Big Bear), Moonlight Graham, Lovebug, Chainsaw
O - Overnight hospital stay at hospital: I had a lump removed from my neck when I was 4.

P - Pet Peeve: Snoring- it drives me crazy.
Q - Quote from a movie: mind is totally blank...
R - Right handed or left: Right

S - Siblings: one younger brother

T - Time you wake up: Usually 5:15am
U - Underwear: Umm...I wear it
V - Vegetable you dislike: Brussels sprouts
W - Workout Style: Running and yoga
Y - Yummy food you make: Ted Squares
Z - The best place to visit: My Grandpa in Southampton.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 13!

...finally catching up....

Project #13: A Sheltering Tree- Folk Art Designs

We're supposed to get lots and lots of snow tomorrow...yay!!! I'm crossing my fingers that my remaining two patterns come with it :-)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 12

One of my patterns finally came!

Project #11: Plants of the Southwest- Art Ventures

My friend Erin and I call ourselves "Arizona enthusiasts." For some reason we both love everything to do with it and love love love to visit it. She's a landscaper and I come from a very garden-y family, so we were both really into the plants that grew there, especially since they're so different from what we have here, so when I came across this, I knew I had to stitch it for her.

I decided to start stitching the Yucca first. A lot of my patterns that I chose for this challenge have a lot of greens in them so I wanted to work on something a little lighter...and the Yucca has some light tan and white...just a little change of pace I guess, though it's quite hard to see in this picture!


I thought I'd share a recipe I tried's absolutely amazing! Don't you just love Paula Deen? I mean seriously, how can you not? Anyone who tells me that a little more butter will solve all of my life's problems is a friend of mine :-)

Erin and I used to watch her show and laugh our butts off at her. I can still hear her echoing through our little apartment.... "let's add another stick a butter ya'll...cause really, why not?"

For some reason I can never find her show anymore, so I asked for one of her cookbooks for Christmas. My parents bought me her "Just Desserts," and I finally decided to make something today. And it was....sooooo delicious!

I have to admit, as I was dipping little pieces of uncooked Pillsbury Country Biscuits into melted butter, then rolling them around in brown sugar and cinnamon I was thinking "oh my gosh, I'm soaking these in melted butter...I can't eat these!" while simultaneously almost laughing with excitement at the prospect of eating them.

So, here it is!

Granite Steps Country Blueberry Coffee Cake

 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

1 12-ounce can buttermilk biscuits

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats

1 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

1/2 cup granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Generously grease a 9-inch square baking dish.  In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon and mix well with a fork.  Separate biscuit dough into 10 biscuits.  Cut each biscuit into quarters, and dip each piece in melted butter and coat with brown sugar mixture.  Arrange in a single layer in baking dish.  Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the oats.  Combine blueberries and granulated sugar in a bowl and toss to coat.  Spoon over oats and biscuits and sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup oats.  Drizzle melted butter on top.  Bake for 20 minutes or until cake is golden brown and center is done.  Cool for 20 minutes.  Serve warm.

*please note, I borrowed this picture from A new roommate just moved into my house and I didn't want her to think I was completely nuts, taking pics of my desserts. There's plenty of time for her to discover my craziness after she gets settled in LOL!


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Catch The Wind Progress!

I've made the most notable progress on Catch The Wind so far, of all my Challenge pieces, so I thought I'd share a little update of it!

So Blogger has decided to load my picture the wrong way even though it's saved on my computer the right just tilt your heads to the right...wayyyy to the right, and you'll see it! Hahaha...

Have a great night everyone!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

To Be Continued....

I'm sad to report that my Crazy January Challenge is to be continued at a later date...because I've run out of projects! I ordered the final ones a couple of weeks ago and am still waiting for them to arrive. I'm completely in love with the ones I chose so it's worth the wait :-)

My day got off to a pretty rocky start when I got to work at realized that Tim's made my coffee wrong. I'm not usually one to complain about things like that but it was cream, no sugar. It was just so sad haha....I drank as much as I could handle and then had to dump the rest out, knowing that I wouldn't have time for a break and wouldn't get to another coffee until I was done for the day....but alas...I LIVED!!!!!

Things got better...I found myself with a free afternoon, which I spent sipping Starbucks and reading of my very favourite pastimes.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that my patterns come soon (tomorrow?) and I can keep going with the Challenge! In the meantime, I'll be working on my already started projects and diligently keeping myself caught up with all of yours!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 11

Project #11: A Frosty Feast- Crossed Wing Collection

This was chosen for 2 reasons. First, my Mom loves building snowmen. It's the funniest thing...she just takes the dog out to run and builds a snowman, by herself, just because she thinks it's fun. Their neighbours get a kick out of it, and she's even gone so far as to buy neon food colouring and is planning to spray paint her next one. Second, Holly loves stitching snowmen and always suggests that I do the same. She found this pattern and insisted I buy's pretty cute!

I'm still not so sure about stitching on linen. I've got about half linen and half aida happening in this's just so delicate, I'm scared I'm going to break it or something haha!

For now, I'll leave you with a pic of my Mom's latest snowman....

Monday, January 10, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 10

Project 10: Coffee- letters and border are from Alphabet Needle Book from Robin (can't remember designer, it's all the way down 2 flights of stairs and I hurt too much to go look right now haha...will update that part later!!)

I decided to use the letters and the border inside the chart, along with the linen Robin sent me to make my own little coffee-ish design. I was sitting, thinking about what to do with these letters and thought about a little note Robin wrote into the card she sent, pointing out a little coffee spill, which made me laugh because I'm forever dripping coffee onto things. So I guess that was the inspiration for this! It will say coffee, latte, cappuccino and expresso down the fabric, with a big coffee cup in the middle with steam coming out of it. Maybe some little coffee beans or something scattered around as well...we'll see :-)

My no coffee challenge officially begins February 1st. I'm sure I'll dedicate that month to working on this one as a way to metaphorically enjoy coffee...or something?

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 9

Project 9: Gardening Chick- Valerie Pfeiffer

I bought this pattern a few months ago because it reminded me of my Mom...she's always outside with a rake or a shovel in her gardens. It wasn't originally on my list but I'm going to swap it for something else...still thinking about which one...

Today was a pretty big deal for me and my running buddies....we ran 16k for the first time! Not only did we run 16, we jumped right from 10k to 16k, skipping 12 and 14. Not at all reccommended by the way...pretty stupid idea...but we're between teaching clinics right now and decided to jump in with the half marathon group, who happens to be at 16. So, at 8:30 this morning we set out for a very long and painful run. The conditions weren't ideal- it was -17 with the windchill. My lungs ached, I couldn't breathe at all...and the instructor had chosen a particularily hilly route. Around 10k we all started to have some issues. None of us had eaten of my hands was tingly and I was seeing spots...Erin was dizzy...and thankfully Todd had Sharkies (sport snacks) in his pocket...they kept us going. Erin started limping because of a major shin issue...I could feel one of my toes getting more and more sore until a piece of it (an extreme callus or blister) broke off and it started bleeding...Todd was in good shape and kept us going! We weren't even the last in the group to finish...but it took just under 2 hours...pretty slow. Now I'm coughing up chunks of lung (not really, but it feels like it hahaha), and everything hurts....but we did it!!!!!!!

So after that traumatic experience I decided I would never be warm again unless I got into a bath. I only have a shower at my house so I drove over to my parents to steal the use of their bathtub and epsom salts. Their house is FREEZING though...and I still don't think I'll ever be warm again! It's so cold here that Cooper stole all of the blankets....

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 8!

Well guys, here we 8. For some reason I feel like we're closing in on the end haha...even though we're not! It's been a lot of work getting all of these started which I think acts as an extra incentive to work on them diligently and get them done by next New Year's Eve!!

Project #8: Blackwork Pincushion

No story again today...I've always been drawn toward blackwork when I see it on blogs or in magazines I read but I passionately hate I've never tried it before. This is a small pattern so even if I do hate it, it's not a huge commitment!

Thanks for visiting today :-)

Friday, January 7, 2011

A Gift From Robin

I came home today to find a package sitting by my was a pattern, a piece of linen, some floss, and a sweet card from Robin! I was super-excited to have finally received this..I've been looking forward to it for a while now! It's perfect, and it totally made my day. I'm going to include this as one of my Crazy January Challenge patterns...though I think I might use the supplied alphabet to spell out a quote or saying of some sort. I'm not sure what yet...I need to think about it for a few days.

Thank you SO MUCH Robin!!! I'm very touched by your kindness and willingness to help me out by sending over a pattern :-)

Crazy January Challenge- Day 7

Project #7: Once Upon A Tree Sampler- Jeanette Douglas Designs

Unfortunately, I have no witty, entertaining or meaningful story to tell you today about why I chose this pattern. I simply liked it, and had seen it in a few shops before finally buying it. But I did get a lot done today :-) was quite tragic. I had a dentist appoitment...just an annual cleaning. He took xrays, and I knew where that was going. He's been harassing me about taking my wisdom teeth out since I was 19....for a grand total of 5 YEARS he's been telling me they need to come out right away. I've suffered through horrible infections, headaches and pressure on my other teeth because of them, but I could never get them out because I'm terrified, terrified, TERRIFIED of needles. It's a major phobia that has caused me nothing but trouble throughout my life. I can withstand any amount of pain but don't even think about coming near me with a needle.....

It turns out my dentist was tired of giving me the same lecture over and over again. He didn't even ask me if they've been bothering me, as he usually does. He cut right to the chase. I believe it went something like this.... "this is getting ridiculous. We have the same conversation over and over again and I'm done. We're going out to the front desk right now and we're booking you an appoitment to have your wisdom teeth taken out. There simply isn't room for them and you're going to wreck all your other teeth if they don't come out now."

I responded with an eye roll, a smile, and a very sarcastic "super" which I don't think he appreciated...and that was that. So March 4th is the day. Maybe the world will come to an end before then LOL!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 6...and My Crazy Parents

Let's start with today's pattern of choice.

Project #6: Peace Tree Ornament- M Designs

There isn't much of a story behind this one. I loved the swirly elegant design of a specific Christmas ball pattern in a shop I was in, but was outraged to discover that it was over $20 just for the pattern, which was quite small. I lucked out and found this one...just as swirly and elegant, and 1/4 of the price!

I know I'm goofy...but...there's a reason I stopped stitching when I did and took this pic even though I planning on going back in a few minutes and continuing. Can anyone see the reason I stopped?

Well okay....I'll just tell you!!!!

If you look closely at the picture, and squint a little, you'll notice that it looks like a face! The little loop in the middle is the eye, then the large loop to the right is the big droopy nose!! Haha....when I noticed I had to stop and take my picture then before it was too late and transformed into something else entirely! Yeah, yeah, yeah...I know....I'm just a goof!

I also thought I'd share a humourous story about my parents and their recently acquired TV watching habits. You first must understand that my parents are (were?) biker gang rockers who partied the 70's away hardcore. They've mellowed greatly as they've entered their 50's, I must say. Here's some proof that I observed throughout my week-long Christmas stay at their house.

It's 5:05pm and my Dad is just getting home from work. He spends a few minutes saying hello to Cooper, then he comes upstairs and my Mom plugs in the kettle for his green tea. He was an avid coffee drinker (several pots a day) until he stopped smoking a few months made him want to smoke, so he switched to green tea. They sit down at the table with their green teas, and someone notices the time.

"Well, I wonder what's happening on Walton Mountain tonight" one of them says.

"Well say now, it's after 5!" the other responds, as they scramble to change the channel to watch The Waltons.

"Awww there's JohnBoy and Grandma...what are they doing?"

"I don't know, I thought Grandma died the other day...."

"Oh, no. She just had appendicitis. She was okay by the end."

"Well that's a relief!" forward to 7:02pm

My Mom is in the kitchen making or cleaning up from dinner, playing with the dog, or reading a magazine. Dad is in the livingroom and realizes what time it is.

"Di! It's after 7! Where's the remote? We're gonna miss the murder!!!"

"Oh no! Hurry up! Where'd you put it??"

Again, they both scramble to find the remote. Once the TV is safely on Murder She Wrote they settle in to watch.

"Well...I wonder what Jessica's up to tonight," Dad says.

Yes, this happened every....single....night. Same events, same conversation. Every single night. I was so amused by it all...oh how age has changed them!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 5

Project #5: Peggy's Cove Lighthouse- Stoney Creek Collection

It has become customary for me to tell you a little bit about why I chose today's pattern...because most of them were chosen for a specific reason, purpose, person in mind. So, here we go!

I chose this one for two reasons. First, my Mom has been asking me to stitch her a lighthouse for several years and I haven't gotten around to it...I could never find the right one. But I came across this little booklet of eight different lighthouses for a ridiculously cheap price so I bought it. When I set about choosing one I was delighted to see that one of them was the lighthouse at Peggy's Cove. Peggy's Cove was one of my favourite destinations on me and Erin's East Coast Trip this past summer. It was breathtaking and I wish we had visited on a different day because on the particular day we went there we were exhausted, sun burnt, and not as into it as we could have been. Nonetheless, it was beautiful.

My pictures don't even come close to comaring to what you see in real life, but here are a couple anyhow...

Update on the coffee situation: I told Ryan that I was in- he has to become vegan for a month if I give up coffee. He said he had been thinking about it all night and realized that he had said coffee rather than caffiene...but if we were doing it, it would have to be no caffiene at all. For some reason, I agreed. Starting February coffee, green tea, regular tea, pop, hot chocolate......  :-(  this'll be interesting!

We did killer hill reps tonight at running. It's the most perfect way to torture people....drag them to the bottom of a giant hill on a frigid winter night and then make them run up and down it over and over again for an hour. OUCH! According to Todd we're better people for it hahaha...according to me, I'm just in more pain because of it.

Stylish Blogger Award??!!?

I've been given the stylish blogger award! How cool is that??

Thank you SOO much Lyssa!!!! I'm a faithful reader of Lyssa's blog, and I couldn't think of a better recipient of the stylish blogger award, and I'm so excited that she passed it along to me!

Upon receiving this award, I'm supposed to tell you all 7 things about myself, and pass it on to 15 people. I'm actually going to tweak the rules a tiny bit and stick my award up in my sidebar to save for a rainy day to pass it along. Cheating, I know. In the meantime, here are 7 things you might not know about me.......

1. I love snow, and the winter season in general
2. I'm obsessed with Rachael Ray
3. I collect donkey anything
4. I have a really bad habit of starting things and never finishing them
5. My favourite place in the entire world is Arizona- it's an unexplainable love, and confusing since I HATE summer heat
6.  I have a certificate in outdoor trail design and construction
7. My boss calls me "the chainsaw" because I can make huge amounts of fruit and veggie trays in a ridiculously short amount of time

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 4

Project #4: Quaker Pincushion- Milady's Needle

I chose this one because I am in desperate need of a pincushion...but I don't want to buy one, I want to make one! When I'm stitching at my parents' house my Dad is always flipping out because I hold my needle in my mouth too much apparently. I saw nothing wrong with that until one day something scared me, I jumped, and the needle cut me. Now I'm looking into pincushions LOL! And I'm quite fond of everything Quaker-inspired.

As you can see, I'm stitching on linen. Thanks for all of you encouraging linen-related comments a couple days ago....I'll keep on trying :-) And thanks everyone for visiting my blog lately, I've been so excited to see that people are reading and following....yay!

Well....I'm thinking I have to add "never take a 2 week holiday from running, even if it's Christmas-time." Tonight Erin (#2), Todd and I met up and ran 5.5k....and it was KILLER! The 3 of us are co-instructing the next 10k clinic so we thought we should get some post-holiday practice in before it know, so the students aren't actually better runners than us hahaha!

The run was terrible, I couldn't breathe, and couldn't keep up, and when Todd commented that I was probably coming up with lots of 4 letter words to call them, I piped in that Todd and Erin were 4 letter words! That went over well hahahaha....we're all very abusive toward eachother, and we have a GREAT time doing it!

We celebrated our terrible run with drinks at Gertis.

Anyways, off to bed, several hours later than planned...tomorrow should be fun!


Here it is!!

I think tomorrow I might look for a different jar though. I started out with a mason jar because I have lots, and I like them. But now that I see what it looks can't really see through it very well.

Up For a Challenge?

No, no, no....not a crazy cross stitching challenge, silly!!!

I'm considering taking on another challenge. Here's the story:

This morning at work, a co-worker, Ryan, and I were having a conversation about his recent vegetarianism. We spent quite a bit of time arguing and debating things, and in the heat of the moment I challenged him to become a vegan for a month. He wavered, saying that he relies a lot on eggs and cheese for nutrients. So of course, I came back with "well good, because I don't think you could do it anyways," knowing from years of experience that the best way to get someone to do something is to tell them that they can't. He smiled, shrugged his shoulders in his Ryan way, and thought for a moment.

Then came the challenge.....

"I'll do it....but only if you give up coffee for a month."


"Seriously? You're here with me every morning at 5 and you want me to give up coffee? Do you understand what you're saying?"

He continued smiling and said that's the deal. If I would agree to give up coffee, he would try to be vegan for a month.

I told him I'd have to think about it.

I came home and consulted my best friend Erin, asking if she thought it would be a good idea. Her response was "that could potentially be very, very bad."

I then thought back to one specific day on a trip Erin and I took a couple of years ago. It was about 2pm and we had been so busy and not in the convenient area of a coffee shop, and I was in a terrible mood, had a headache, and didn't want to co-operate with anyone or anything. She asked what was wrong, and I said I didn't know. She asked how many cups of coffee I had so far. I thought about it and said "none." Her response to that was "God help us all."

Yep...that sums it all up.

That being said, I'm really not one to turn down a challenge. So......?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 3

So....not really feelin it today. I got really busy and then when I finally had a chance to sit down and start, the pattern I was planning on stitching wasn't in my bin. I can't find it...maybe I left it at my parents' house. Eeeek my poor organizational skills are already starting to take over! So I improvised, picked a different one, and managed a grand total of 7 stitches.

Project #3: German Shepherd- Anchor

This project is special to me because I've always loved German Shepherds. I've had 3 of them throughout my life...Sheehan (pronounced Shen, meaning Big Paw in some native language), Rocky, and now Cooper. I think they're amazing dogs and have been the best friends to me...especially Cooper. We have a special bond that I can't quite describe...but he's a part of me. This one's for Sheehan, Rocky, and Coop.

Pretty uneventful day over here. Uneventful in the sense that I didn't get to do what I wanted: come home from work, go grocery shopping, read blogs, then lay in bed with my book. My friend Erin (not the one who visits and who I visit all the time)....I call her Erin #2 to distinguish know, because she came AFTER Erin makes logical sense in my mind LOL! Anyways, Erin #2 stopped by work to visit me this morning, but missed me by about a half she popped by to see if I was home, and I was. So we went out shopping for a bit (see, I DID grocery shop after all!) and by the time I got back home it was time to go to Holly's for dinner. That turned into a wii tournament with Chris and Cait, and here I am, 9:52pm with nothing done. Ah well...had a blast today anyways so who cares...the blogs and my book will still be here tomorrow :-) laundry machine just stopped so I better go deal with that and head to bed. Thanks for all your comments lately...hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to visit all of your blogs and see what's up with you guys! Good night!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 2

Project #2: The Bookshelf- Little House Needleworks

I bought this pattern back in October when I last visited Erin in London. I fell in love with it right away because it featured all of my favourite classic literature authors. I spent so much time studying these women when I was working on my BA, it only made sense to stitch it. I've been diligently saving up to buy a house for the last several years and when I eventually am able to, I have a vision of dedicating a dection of my house to floor to ceiling bookshelves that will hold all of my books, which are currently burying me alive in my small basement apartment. I immediately knew that this design will hang on the wall of my theoretical new house next to my bookshelves.

Again, an impressive start by my standards! Between my slow stitching, busy schedule, and general tiredness, I usually don't get this much done in one day....maybe I'll keep it up and actually complete this challenge...yahooooo!!!

This is my first time stitching on linen (except for a horribly failed attempt at a Heaven and Earth Design last winter), and I have mixed feelings about it. I miss the stability and neatness of aida, where everything is perfectly even and predictable. The linen is a little more difficult for me because it seems to be slightly off and when I look at it really closely, my stitching looks terrible. But from a few feet away, I'm really liking how it looks. So...we'll see!

This has been my first day to myself in several weeks. I spent a week at my parents' house during Christmas, then the day I got back Erin came and stayed for a couple of days. So I was a little lost when I got home from work and had nobody to talk to. I chatted with my roommate for a little while, but we don't know eachother very well- she just moved in a month ago. She asked me to come down to her room and help her look for her TV remote because she couldn't find it anywhere. So I went down and together we tore her room apart looking for it...and it's nowhere. I have no clue where it could possibly be...but one thing's for's definately not in her room! So that occupied some time. I was planning on going grocery shopping because I have no food, since I haven't really been here in a couple of weeks....but quickly discovered that I'm exhausted and spent the rest of the day laying around watching movies, stitching, and reading....and now I'm left with nothing to eat for dinner except a truckload of Christmas candy. I'm not complaining :-)

Tomorrow will be work, grocery shopping, and blog reading day :-)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Crazy January Challenge- Day 1!

Let's start with the Crazy January Challenge portion of this post....

Project #1: Catch the Wind- Butternut Road

Holly found this pattern for me while we were digging through bins at a stitch shop a couple of weeks ago. She held it up and said "oh my gosh, this one's just beautiful." I agreed, and fell in love with it. I started stitiching it first because it's my favourite of my 15.

I actually had a pretty big chunk of time today to work on this, so I ended up getting quite a bit my standards anyways! I'm so excited about this challenge...but I'm already starting to re-think my choices, as usual. Some were chosen for a specific reason or person in mind. Some were chosen just because I thought they were cool, yet some were chosen because I was in a hurry and they looked okay at the time. Now I'm thinking maybe I can find something better....something that I actually love. So I'm going to start with my favourites that I know I definately want to do, and see what happens in the meantime. With the craziness of the holidays over I finally have some time to look around online and in town, so maybe I'll find some replacements!

Moving along.....

Happy New Year everyone!! I had a pretty low-key night, and to be honest, I've never been a fan of New Year's. It's my least favourite holiday and I generally avoid it by hibernating in my parents' basement with a book. I've been dragged out to parties with friends in the past but I'm kind of over that.

This year Erin came to celebrate with me, so it ended up being enjoyable. I had to work 12-9pm Thursday, then 5am-2pm I was pretty much exhausted and not into going out. So we took a drive downtown to see if the cross stitch store was open (it wasn't), then we went to Starbucks, treated ourselves to a fancy drink, and then went to Chapters to read magazines, which is one of our favourite things to do together. We hung out there until they kicked us out because they were closing, and then decided just to come back to my house to have dinner.

We finished off our evening by cross stitching and watching movies. We watched The Young Victoria, Precious, and Knocked Up. I'm not entirely sure what went in in The Young Victoria because I was too into my stitching, then fell asleep for a while. I read the book Precious last year and saw the movie when it came out, so it wasn't new to me. It was Erin's first time seeing it, and she hadn't read the book, and she found it quite difficult. It's a very depressing, disturbing, difficult movie to watch, but it's also very important to be aware that these things happen. It was a good idea to lighten things up with Knocked Up afterwards...would it have been a bad omen to wrap up 2010 with a movie like Precious? Through some miracle I made it to midnight...and that was that.

Goals For 2011...

I've been thinking a lot lately about setting some goals for the upcoming year. 2010 was a really difficult and challenging year for me and for most people I know actually, so I wanted to try to make some positive changes and try to keep things in perspective, and also to have some goals to work towards regardless of what else is going on in my life throughout the year. I think I came up with a pretty good, solid list.....

1. Complete the Crazy January Challenge
2. Work on being grateful for what I have rather than jealous and resentful of what others have (this is a big one for me)
3. Run a half marathon
4. Be more organized
5. Wash my car more often

What about you? Do you have any goals or resolutions for 2011?