Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wild Berries and a dastardly FROG!

If any of you have insomnia, you know what torture it is to spend the night shifting and re-arranging pillows and so forth -- ANYTHING to get some SLEEP!   I usually can't sleep more than three hours at any one time, tops.  I know that it's bad for me - trust me.  But I take a slew of medications for my bum back, and I guess the payoff for trying to live with some moderate reduction in pain is lack of ZZZZ's. :-(

I usually can't even stitch when I'm up all night - I just cannot seem to get comfortable or can't focus my eyes something. Well, the past night or two I decided I'm going to change THAT and was progressing along quite nicely (I thought) on the newest Blackbird Designs "Wild Berries" when -- wouldn't ya know -- I discovered yesterday that I had managed to totally mess up my count.   Don't you hate that!? Drives me bonkers!! And this was such a careless error on my part.  But, of course, one little row of stitches off can really throw your project into a tailspin, right?  

And, once I start frogging, I seem to have trouble STOPPING!  It seems like I'll start out thinking, "Oh, I'll just need to take out this teensy little row," or "OHHH...this isn't TOO bad a mistake!"  WRONG!! Like a knit sweater with a loose thread that just unravels to pieces, that seems to be my "story" every time I begin to pull out a mistake.  And last night was no exception.  What started out as just removing a little bit of a border, ended up with my pulling out a good hunk of the border...and then the alphabet letters which were off....and then the tree trunk that was off...and then.... Well, you get the idea!

Tonight I conked out around 10 PM while watching TV (I must be revisiting my "teaching" hours!) and then, as usual, up I popped out of a sound sleep sometime shortly after midnight.  I took my pain medication as my hip was SCREAMING at me, then I checked on emails, then thought, "I really need to fix that Blackbird piece - insomnia be cursed!" 

I must have dozed off for a while because it doesn't seem like I made a lot of progress during the night. 
But I have the coffee cranking and I plan to spend the day moving right ahead with this.   Here's where I was at about 2:00 AM (I think?)  I can't even remember what time I snapped the picture!  Lol!  I am further than this now, but just don't feel like getting up to snap another photo. I must say -- the colors the Blackbird girls chose for this design are very appealing to me.  Hope the pic does them justice (I did click the "auto enhance" just to brighten it up a bit!)  Ok, JAVA - I smell ya calling to me!  Off to caffeinate myself and STITCH my fingers off!   Have a great Wednesday, folks. 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

I'm still alive and kickin' -- STITCHIN' actually!

Well, I have been a very, very bad blogger!  I honestly have been so busy stitching lately (and, yes, STILL working on organizing as well!) that my computer time has been taking a hit.   There are only so many hours in a day, right?  I guess I finally came to the realization that I cannot ever hope to catch up with my HOARD here if I spend a large hunk of each day attached to my iPad, SOOO I've been trying to limit my computer time to my morning coffee time only -- and let me tell you, it's been working!

First, here's a small project I finished - the first in the series of twelve Sheep Virtues by LHN.  I'm using hand-spun, hand-dyed wool fibers by Liz at Dragonflylotus.  
I have a lot of catching up to do on this series, as I believe we're up to the sixth sheep.  So, I'm only five behind.  Baa baa!! 

Next, I've started stitching this GORGEOUS sampler by Theresa Baird - A Maryland Inspiration.  Don't have a progress pic to share yet, but here's a photo of the model.  Don't you absolutely love it?  Theresa is definitely at the top of my list of favorite designers! 
I also grabbed two other charts designed by Theresa Baird: Stone House on the Brandywine, and A Cottage by the Sea.   The cottage chart is only available at Salty Yarns, so head on over there if you want to stitch this beauty!!
Today, I'm busily at work stitching the first in the new Loose Feathers series by Blackbird Designs, called "Wild Berries."  Again, this is a model pic (sorry!) but I'm about 1/2 way done and am hoping to finish this one today or tomorrow! The colors of the Gentle Arts fibers for this one are beautiful, by the way!  Don't you love the bird?  I have a weakness for designs with BIRDS and HOUSES. 
I'm also working on the Lizzie Kate "mystery" Halloween design from last year, and have two Scarlet Letter samplers I'm still working on - "The Sampler" and "Cornelia Vanderveer."  Whew - long list, I know! ;-)

Lastly, I have been pretty diligent with my "Operation Organization" here.  I've managed to sort almost all of my stash into groups by designer, type up lists of the titles of a good number of my charts (by designer, and in ALPHABETICAL ORDER, thanks to Word), and have labeled and organized all my fabrics AND fibers! I know that sounds like I must be finished, but NOPE!! Still dealing with piles all over my craft room (aka, Guest Bedroom!) and still have a hefty STACK of WIP's sitting next to my stitching spot.  But I did finish constructing my two lateral filing cabinets, so I have a place for a chunk of my charts to reside. 

For some reason, my Wheaten Terrier Seamus has decided he likes jumping up and getting comfortable on my stitching area - so I now need to cover everything or move it all out of the reach of his dirty paws anytime I move away from stitching (like right now).  But, he's a sweetheart and I love his company, so I'm not complaining.  He had a very scary (and expensive) bout with some mystery illness
last month, and I was really scared I was going to lose him.  So, I'm grateful he's back to his energetic self and happy he wants to spend time with me.  

Hope everyone has a great Sunday.  Happy stitching - and next time I'll have more actual pics of my progress on my projects!!  Kevin