Tuesday, December 21, 2010

So Much To Do....

I guess everyone feels the same way, so much to be done in such a little time.  I was doing well in early December, but then just got buried in the to do list.  And the transmission went out on the car!  But all is well.  Today is my last day at work until the new year.  I still have to bake for my neighbors.  And then Christmas will be at my Mom and Dad's.  I'll bake something for that as well.  I'm hoping to cross stitch while I'm off. 

Here is the latest progress on my travel piece.

Guess I better get to work if I want to be done by Christmas.  I think it will be since I won't have so much to do after today.

I posted my list for the challenge Jayne is doing.  Here it is.....I only have 8 WIPs so I'm adding some new starts to make the 15.

1.  The gift for my friend that I've been working on forever it seems.  I don't want to say much about it because I'm afraid she will see this.  I probably won't post a picture until it's finished and framed for her and Jayne said that was o.k.
2.  Rooster Wall Hanging - really this will be a pillow.  It's from a Better Homes and Gardens Magazine called Cross-Stitch For All Seasons.
3.  Seaside Cottages - A Dimensions Kit
4.  Four Seasons Chairs - Diana Thomas
5.  I love Santas Stocking - Bucilla Kit
6.  Joy - Prairie Moon
7.  Coffin Buzz - Freebie from Plum Street Samplers
8.  A Grand Adventure....here's the thing I can't find this one.  So I put off posting my list because I can't find it but I felt like I really needed to post my list.  Today is my last day at work for awhile so I'm going to search high and low for it.  It may still be packed from where we moved.

And here is a list of the new starts I'm thinking about to make up the 15....

9. Plaid Greetings - Ladybug Lane Designs
10. Goodie Holder - Charlette's Collectibles
11. Consumed by Gifts _ Brittercup Designs
12. Nickademus - Raise the Roof Designs
13. Candy Cane Reindeer - Serendipity Designs
14. Oh, Joy! - Val's Stuff
15. Love and Joy - Plum Street Samplers

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

November totals and the 2011 Challenge

Remember when I said I loved Lindsay's idea about keeping a monthly total for stitching?  I've never done that before and since I really want to increase my stitching time, I thought this might be a good idea.  I also said we might all have a good laugh at the end of month.  I'm glad I kept track so that I can continue to focus and make changes.  My records show that I was able to stitch 14 days in November for a total of 15 hours and 30 minutes.  Let's see how I do next month.

I went home last night to see if I could find any additional WIPs to add to my list for the 2011 Flip'n Crazy January Challenge.  I really didn't find any others.  I have a couple of super big projects that are WIPs but I already have 2 pretty big projects on the list that I really want to get finished.  So I decided against adding them to the list.  I do want to try to get all 15 done.  That will be a big challenge for me. But if you read Jayne's original post about the challenge you will see that she gave me permission to start some new projects now in order to have 15 WIP in January.  ROTFL.  I just might have to take her up on that!  Don't you just love Jayne? 

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

2011 Challenge?

I've been reading about a challenge for 2011.  I first read about it on Shalleen's blog.  The challenge was to start 15 new projects in 2011 and finish them in 2011.  Basically you start a new project each day for the first 15 days in January and then finish them throughout the year.  And I liked the idea but I knew there would be no way to sell this to my husband.  He doesn't understand why I can't start a project and just finish it before I go to the next.  Does anyone else have that problem? 

But then I just read on Jayne's blog about a twist on this challenge.  Her challenge is called the Flip'n Crazy January Challenge and it's to finish 15 WIP in 2011.  This one I might could do.  I'm not sure if I have 15 WIP or not.  Can't wait to get home and count them.  I can think of 8 so that's a start.  And I think I could sell this to my husband.  I wouldn't be starting anything new just finishing up my WIP pieces. 

I was looking for some kind of SAL or Challenge or something for 2011.  This might be the ticket!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wise Words

"Kind words are short and easy to speak but their echoes are truly endless."  Mother Teresa

I guess you can tell I love quotes!

I am making more progress this month than I have in the past on my stitching.  Of course, I can't show you my focus piece.  I'm really kind of annoyed about that.  I'm thinking that in the new year I would like to do a SAL.  Maybe with a group where we say every Thursday we work on a certain piece.  I've seen many of you doing these.  Does anyone know of one I could join in the new year?  I'd need to order supplies so I guess I need to be thinking about this. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Black Bean Chili

Things are a little cool here.  We made our usual chili and a black bean chili for a recent get together.  The black bean chili turned out so well that I wanted to share the recipe with you.  Here it is:

Black Bean Chili

   ½ pound ground beef
   ½ pound Italian sausage
    2 cans black beans drained and rinsed
    2 cans diced tomatoes
    1 cup chopped onions
    2 teaspoons garlic
    1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
    1 tablespoon chili powder
    1 teaspoon ground cumin
    Pinch paprika
    ½ teaspoon black pepper
    ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
    ¼ teaspoon oregano
    ¼ teaspoon thyme
    ½ teaspoon salt
    4 cups water
    2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
    1 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese

In a skillet, brown ground beef, Italian sausage, onions and garlic.  Drain and move into a pot.
Add tomatoes, jalapeno, chili powder, cumin, paprika, black pepper, cayenne pepper, oregano, thyme, salt and water.  Let simmer for around 15 minutes.  Add black beans and let simmer for an additional 20 minutes. 

Right before serving add the lime juice, cilantro and cheddar cheese.  My husband also likes sour cream and crackers!

If you make it, I would love to hear about it!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Ho Ho Ho Update and Question

I wanted to give an update on my Ho Ho Ho Ornament.  Keep in mind that this is just my lunch time stitching.  So while there is some progress it's really not a lot.

I'm still working away on the project that is a gift.  I feel bad since that is where most of my time stitching is being spent and I can't show you my progress.  I'm only about half way finished with the project so I still have a lot to do. 

I have noticed on several blogs that it is common to start a new project on your birthday.  My birthday is coming up on November 30th.  And I LOVE the boxes Becky has made. I would love to make a box like this for myself and I think it would be a perfect birthday gift to myself.  Does that sound selfish?  I'm really not.  I only have a couple of things I've stitched because I almost always stitch gifts for others.  But this leads me to a question.  What pattern should I choose?  I'd like something that could stay out all year.  Does anyone have a suggestion?  I don't have a local store, so I'll need to order the pattern.  What do you think?

Monday, November 1, 2010

What A Great Idea

Oh my goodness!  I have a follower and someone posted a comment.  Thank you so much for the warm welcome to blogging.  I'm so excited to see others have found me.  I'm still a little nervous about posting so I hope you won't get bored before I figure this all out.

I was reading blogs today and came across Lindsay.  She has a wonderful thing she does at the end of each month.  She posts how many stitching hours she got in that month and a summary of what she accomplished.  What fun.  Kind of like a challenge to yourself each month.  And since today is November 1st, it's the perfect time to join in.  Hopefully we won't all laugh at my attempt at the end of November.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Current Projects

I have two current projects.  Only two you ask?  Well, I have more UFOs than I care to admit to.  However I'm trying to get that number down. 

The first project is really my main project that I stitch on during weeknights after work and on the weekends.  It's a gift so I really can't post a picture of it yet.  Sorry!

The second project is my lunch/errand project.  I've just started it.  I know this picture is horrible.  I'm so sorry, but I really wanted to post today so I had to take a cell phone picture.  Something is better than nothing, right?  This will be a Christmas ornament.  Christmas is my favorite holiday!  The design is from a book called A Cross-Stitch Christmas Celebrations in Stitches from Better Homes and Gardens.  The name of the design is called Ho Ho Ho Ornament.

Like I said, I've just started it, but I really wanted to post today.  

Monday, October 25, 2010

Halloween Giveaway

Terri is having an amazing Halloween Giveaway.  Be sure to stop by soon and enter to win! Terri's blog can be found here.


First, let me say thank you to all my stitching friends that have inspired me.

Have you ever been in a place in life where all the sudden you stopped and asked, "How did I get here?"  That's kind of where I am now.  I'm certainly not where I thought I would be.  And I have to say, it's mostly the decisions of another that have brought me here.  Kind of frustrating, really.  I'm reminded of a scripture from Jeremiah 31:13.  "Then maidens will dance and be glad, young men and old as well.  I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow."  That's exactly what I need:  comfort and joy instead of sorrow. 

I was reading a book this weekend, The Perfect Life by Robin Lee Hatcher.  It was a great book.  And I want to share a couple of sentences that spoke to me.  "We can't always alter our circumstances, and we can't control how others behave or think, no matter how hard we try.  Our focus must be on what we need to change about ourselves - our attitudes, our words, our actions - even if our circumstances and the other people in our lives remain the same."

I think it spoke to me because that's where I am. 

I will be back later in the week to share my stitching with you.