Progress

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

WIP Wednesday: 2015 Round-up

Unlike my cross stitch hero Mrs Milkybar Kid, I didn't start or end the year with a clean slate. I still have lots of WIPs out there, although I did manage to finish up a few in 2015 that had been hanging around for years.

This is not an inclusive list as there are other WIPs hanging around that I didn't work on at all in 2015. And it's pretty photo-heavy too. :)

WIPs as of January 2015 (pre Crazy January Challenge) and now finished:

White Wolves from 2003?
FINISHED!

Homeward Trail from 2012
 FINISHED!





Dimensions Joy Ornament from 2012
FINISHED!

LK's Dog Lessons from 2013?



FINISHED!




Dimensions The Good Life from 2011?
FINISHED!
Fry and Leela from 2012
FINISHED!


I'm really excited about finishing some of these that had been sitting around for a long, long time. Some still need finish-finishing, but at least the stitching has been finished.

WIPs that I worked on in 2015 but didn't finish

Ladyfee 2014 SAL
 Warbreaker from 2013

skitzzzzz fractal from 2011?
Tribal Dragon

I think I'll at least carry over Tribal Dragon, and possibly a few of these others will at least get worked on if they're not part of the DUCJFC.

New starts that are now WIPs to be worked on in 2016

Otto BAP- barely started
AAN Spider Banner

AAN Maple Leaf
Twilight Race Cars
Dimensions Sleigh Ride stocking




Princess and the Dragon
Butterfly Quote



I have hopes of finishing some of these next year, especially since I hope that some will hang in DD's room soon. 

I mostly have my DUCJFC projects set up and will try and add these WIPs in with them. Of course some of the projects I've chosen are decent sized, so I would think this next year might be my last one of the challenge starts for at least a year or so. We'll see how it all plays out though, I might manage to finish several WIPs and starts and end up better at the end of next year than I did this year. 

Thanks for coming along with my this year in my stitching adventures and I really appreciate all of your comments!

Happy Stitching,

Tiffstitch







Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Top 10 Tuesdays: Top 10 Things To Look Forward to in 2016

Top 10 Tuesday time! Don't forget to check out our host Kate's blog and feel free to join in with Keebles and myself too. 

Top 10 Things to Look Forward to in 2016

1. Debbie's Ultimate Crazy January/February Challenge

This will be my first year attempting to work on a new project every day throughout January and February. Not all of my projects will be new, some will be WIPs, especially some leftover from this year, but I will attempt to work on something different every day. 

I'm not sure yet if I will post every day or try and do a few days in one post like Linda did last year. She's doing the 365 starts in 2016, so bookmark her blog to check out all her projects. 

2. New Equipment for the Office

We bought the practice over a year and a half ago now and it's time to update the equipment. Things have been going pretty well and fingers crossed they will continue that way. 

3. More Fun with DD

DD will be in her third year and will be ready for all kinds of new experiences this year. She's already getting used to having snow around, so that will be fun for a few months and I hope we get some good packing snow soon. It's not quite right yet, even today's snow is a little too powdery. 

4. Game Nights with Friends

My friends that had game nights through November and December are planning on having a few now and then in the new year, so I hope we can make it work with a visit from my parents and DH and I can both go. I went to a couple solo last year, which was still fun, but I think he was a little left out. 

5. Hockey

Now that I've been playing hockey more, I want to play more! It's a lot of fun and good exercise for me too. I've missed playing so much and my fitness level is finally getting to the point where I can use some of the skills I learned way back when. 

6. The big 4-0

I will be turning 40 next year and that's okay. I'm not worried about it and maybe we'll have a party or something. 

7. The big 4-0 for DH

We were both born in the same year, although I'm a few months older. :) I don't have any good ideas right now, and DH has made some of my big birthdays really special, so I need to figure out something soon. 

8. Teaching DD to skate

I don't know if it will be this next year I teach her to skate, but maybe? It would be fun and now that she can walk she can learn how to skate too!

9. New laptop

My laptop is dying a slow death and I've ordered a new one, but it won't arrive until 2016. :)

10. Bike trips

We all did a fair bit of biking last year, but I was certainly holding DH back a fair bit. I'm hoping with playing hockey all winter I'll be in better shape for this spring to fall seasons and we'll be able to go on longer trips. That might depend on DD as well though. 

Thanks for checking out my list and what are you looking forward to in 2016?

Tiffstitch

Monday, December 28, 2015

Last Weekend Wrap-Up of 2015

Here we are, almost a week after my last post! It turned out to be fairly busy over the holidays after all. DD had a great time with all of the presents, and played with everything. She was a little leery of the dragon/dinosaur slippers and she hasn't really worn those yet, but maybe she will try them on her own time. 

There was some stitching done despite all the cleaning, breaking down of boxes, traveling, etc. and some gingerbread cookies from the recipe I posted last Tuesday. They turned out well, so give them a try if you're looking for a healthier gingerbread cookie. I didn't take any photos, but they did well with the cookie cutters, including the Doctor Who ones. If there are any left when I get home I'll try and take a photo. 

Stitching:

FFO: Mill Hill kit


Here's the fully finished Mill Hill with beaded hanger and backing and a close-up of the beads. The recipient liked it very much. Thank you for all of your great comments on it!

I started a gift for my other co-worker, but I didn't finish in time.
from 2011 Cross Stitch for the Holidays

I think I'll add this to my Crazy Jan/Feb Challenge and then at least something will get finished next year. :)

I ended up making 2 little gift tags for their children instead:

and I used a free online alphabet for the letters. I stitched them on 14 count silver perforated paper and backed them with navy felt. The thread is Berry Swirl (I think) by Carrie's Creations.

I also managed a pretty decent amount of work on Ho Ho Ho! by Lizzie Kate:

I worked on this while traveling this weekend and I'm please with how far long it is now. I'm not stitching it as charted, this is with TGA Desert Mesquite for the tree and holly and WDW for the stars, as well as PTB for the lettering. That is by far the easiest metallic to work with for me. I was even able to stitch with 2 strands! 

I'd like to say if I kept at this it will be another finish, but there's too much going on with getting ready for the Debbie's Ultimate Crazy January/February Challenge. I mostly have my new starts selected and my leftover CJC pieces from this year will join the pile. That should give me at least 60 projects, if not more. 

I have an expanding file to store most of them, so that looks like this:
Hopefully that will help keep them all organized. I'd also like to get the "finish" drawer organized since I think I might need more room in there this year. :) 

We'll see what I get done and I'll try and have an end-of-year round-up of everything from 2015. 

Happy Stitching and I hope you've been having a good holiday season!

Tiffstitch

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Top 10 Tuesdays: Top 10 Food/Drink For Holiday Season

Top 10 Tuesday time! This week we talk about food and drink we enjoy over the holidays. My list may be a little limited because of my food allergies, so make sure you check out Keeble's and Kate's lists to get some ideas. 

TOP 10 TUESDAYS: TOP 10 FOOD/DRINK FOR HOLIDAYS

1. Snowdrops
image from jaybirdblog.com

My Grandma made these every year and they were always the first to disappear from the cookie trays. Does everyone have those? Mixed cookies on trays that are kept in the "cold room" (Grandma's porch in her case). As children we'd try and sneak out on the porch to get some of these out of their containers.

I managed to make these once without problem and will attempt them again this year. DH doesn't think they're much more than a vehicle for chocolate chips, and I wonder how he doesn't get that that is their purpose. :)

2. Egg Nog

I love eggnog. Something about the spicy creaminess of it, yum! I have to stick with dairy free ones now and they're pretty decent! I don't know if I'll be able to try making my own or stick with purchasing some this year. 

3. Peanut Butter Marshmallow Squares (not allergy friendly)

These should be horrible like their appearance, but they're delicious! Or at least they were the last time I tried them 10+ years ago. 

4. Gingerbread People

image from cookieandkate.com

You can't go wrong with gingerbread and there are lots of good recipes online to fit any allergy. 

I'm running out of ideas for dairy free holiday food. I don't drink, so I don't have any tips on alcoholic drinks to get through the holidays. I'll post a few I remember enjoying when I was a child for now. 

5. Shortbread (not allergy friendly)
from allrecipes.com

My Grandma made fantastic shortbread! I have fond memories of it from when I was a child and visiting during the holidays. I don't know that she still does at 92, but my cousin makes some that people tell me is fantastic. I can't even get near it since it has lots of butter. She can bake really well though, so I'm sure it's awesome. 

from veganmiam.com

Nanaimo bars are a Canadian specialty that may have originated in Nanaimo, B.C. It's definitely named after the city, but the origins are a little varied according to sources. The point is, they're delicious! I didn't try one for a long time as a child since the bottom layer contains coconut and I don't enjoy coconut much. But these are amazing! You can't even taste the coconut. I have yet to attempt a dairy free edition of these mostly since I don't want to use as much margarine as they recommend. Maybe someday I can figure it out or I can find a recipe that uses coconut oil or something. 

That seems to be all I can come up with so far, I hope you enjoyed the list!

Tiffstitch

Monday, December 21, 2015

Weekend Wrap-Up: A New Finish

I didn't get the afghan done in time to mail it, and now I'm realizing I could have finished off the smaller Dimensions ornament I'd finished earlier in the year and sent that back with my parents. 

This one:

Hindsight is 20/20 right? 

Anyways, I was really busy with the preparations for DH's birthday last week and barely had any stitching time. The afghan hasn't progressed much farther than the last photo. I'm thinking I may finish up the above one and mail it off so it will get there shortly after Xmas. 

I did manage to finish the stitching and beading on the Mill Hill tree kit as of last night:

So now I only need to make the hanger and back it with felt. That will be finished up tonight and it's only deciding if I will attempt another project or not to finish up by Thursday for my co-workers. I'm thinking a small towel might be possible, but not another tree kit like this one. 

I didn't get the one I started for my other friend completed, so I'm also debating about finishing it up since there's not much to do, but it can wait until after Xmas and be a present for someone next year. Possibly even for the same friend. I brought truffles over Friday night instead of the stitched gift. :) 

I can't use it for my other co-worker since it's a mini cat pattern and he's allergic to cats. So we'll see what I get done. There's also lots of wrapping to finish, but that can be done on Christmas eve; we don't have anything else planned. 

I hope you're all ready for the holiday, I think I am now. It took a while and we were buying things even last night. There was a plan to go on snow slides in Quebec on Boxing Day (Dec. 26), but there's no snow up here, so I don't think we'll be doing that. 

I should be back on after Top Ten Tuesdays tomorrow, but if not, Merry Christmas to all who celebrate it and enjoy the holiday if you don't. 

Happy Stitching and check out the Stitchery Link Up this week!

Tiffstitch

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

WIP Wednesday - A Work in Progress

I've started to back the afghan with the fabric, so it's rough yet, and I'm paranoid that I'm dropping pins in places DD might find them. I check every night, but everyone keep your fingers crossed for me please! 

Here's the finished product before any pinning:

And here's where I am so far:

I do really like how the afghan is coming together and it seems that the backing is staying straight so far. Since I don't have a sewing machine, I'm stitching it in an obvious way and that's highlighting each design as well. That was a nice, unforeseen benefit.

I have a feeling I won't finish by Friday, but we'll see. I have to finish Thursday night and the chances of that are fairly slim. I have a lot of work tonight getting cheesecake ready for DH's birthday on Thursday. I'm going to try and make 2 cheesecakes. One will be goat cheese from this recipe, and the other will be vegan

I left some cashews soaking and hopefully they'll be perfect by the time I get home tonight. I'll see if I can work on it with DD or if I need to wait until she goes to bed. She might like to help, sometimes she does as long as she gets to sample everything. 

Happy Stitching and if you don't hear from me for a few days don't be surprised. :)

Tiffstitch

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Top 10 Tuesdays: Top 10 Xmas Charts

I did a post on this a few months ago and you can see it here. I'll add 10 different charts this time. I'm sure that Keebs and Kate and I will all have different charts in our lists, so check their lists as well to get some ideas for your Xmas gifts. :)

TOP 10 CHRISTMAS CROSS STITCH CHARTS

1. Reindeer Games: The Huddle by Ink Circles
image from inkcircles.com

I haven't stitched this one, but I love the creativity behind it. You don't even know right away the motifs are reindeer and using one red bead to represent Rudolph is very clever. My only question is, which reindeer is missing? :)

2. Twas the Night Before Christmas by Sue Hillis
image from 123stitch.com

Sue Hillis has so many fun Christmas patterns! I love how she adds fun to all of her designs and I have one of hers lined up to re-stitch next year. 

3. December by Cross Eyed Cricket
 
image from thesilverneedle.com

I've never stitched anything from this designer, but this looked fun. They have something for every single month if you're in to that kind of seasonal work. I'm much too lazy to change things every month. :)

4. Small Sleds - Mini Village by Foxwoods Crossings

image from 123stitch.com

I don't have any of these sleds, but they look like a fun little ornament to stitch and they're finished by the time you're done stitching! 

5. The Joys of Christmas Ornaments by The Drawn Thread

image from 123stitch.com

Another set of ornaments and all different designs to say "Joy". I like these small little stitches and I bet if you like this chart you could finish at least one ornament by Xmas. 

6. Mill Hill kits other than trees - Merry Moose and Polar Bear


images from 123stitch.com

I posted about the Mill Hill tree kits in my previous Xmas chart post, but there are a lot of other kits that Mill Hill produces that are Xmas oriented. There are a set of musical instruments as well as beautiful beaded ornaments, not to mention these fun animals. 

7. Jolly Trio Christmas stocking by Dimensions
image from 123stitch.com

This keeps falling in my wish list. I have yet to stitch a stocking for myself. I don't usually like cutesy stuff, but this somehow always catches my eye. Plus you could say there's 3 subjects in this and that would fit with DH, DD and myself. There's also a tumbling pile of snowmen I'm debating about. But first, to finish DD's stocking. 

8. Little Girl with Ornament by Handblessings

image from 123stitch.com

My eye is always drawn to this one as well. DH doesn't think much of it, but I like that it fits with DD and our cat. And she got a nice Xmas nightshirt for her birthday from her great-aunt, so it really fits this year! I might get this one to stitch as an ornament for our tree after seeing how Vonna (The Twisted Stitcher) stitches ornaments each year for her children. I should still have time to finish it. I would likely change up the colours though. 

9. Tiny Tidings XIX by Lizzie Kate
image from 123stitch.com

You can't go wrong with LK. It's easy to tell how much she loves Christmas by how many amazing designs she has. I'm stitching one right now and have about 3 more in my stash. These ones are very fun and would be a nice gift for anyone.

10. Happy Christmas by Prairie Schooler

image from 123stitch.com

I will admit I'm not a big fan of primitive designs, so I don't have any Prairie Schooler designs in my stash, but I really like this one. And since they're retiring, if you're looking for any PS designs, better add them to your stash now!

I hope you enjoyed the list and I do not apologize for stash enhancement. :)

Happy Stitching!

Tiffstitch