Stitch Therapy

Discovering me … one stitch at a time

Category: embroidery (Page 2 of 3)

Around here.

Hi Friends. Can you believe that we are almost half way through January?

We had a pretty exciting weekend. Friday was the Pinewood Derby. Apparently Biggest’s car had an illegal speed axle. Huh? What? Thankfully with some last minute adjustments, he was allowed to race. Phew.

I spent most of the weekend concocting and cooking. I made Elderberry Syrup. Behold…

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I also made bone broth, spaghetti sauce, and soup, but they were not so dramatic so no pictures. (But were delish).

I got it into my head that I REALLLLY needed Lettuce Wraps, so Tom took me to PF Changs. The Lettuce Wraps were disappointing, but the mojito that accompanied them made up for it. Mmmm… sugar water + alcohol.

I wasn’t planning for this entire post to be about food, but apparently it is.

This will be a busy week with two trips to the big city. Yesterday, I ended up on the local train which is sooooo slow. I spent over 3 hours just sitting on a train. Luckily I brought along my stitching because there’s only so much you can look at Facebook. At first it was too bumpy to stitch, but things got smoother. I’m working on some backstitching in the borders and, can I tell you… backstitching is the BEST! At first, I did it “over one” and was annoyed with how long it was taking, but then I looked at the instructions which said to do it “over two.” SO MUCH FASTER!

Embroidery, Fajitas, & FUN!

I should start every post with “I went to NY yesterday, ” because that’s basically my work life these days. It feels that way, anyway.

I know that some people feel energized and alive in the city, but not me. I feel overwhelmed and overstimulated and overcrowded. I like space and quiet, clearly not a city mouse.

Yesterday was especially bad because it was 1. a Monday, 2. FREEZING(!), 3. a long day, 4. dark before I even got home. By the time I got home, Tom had already fed the boys dinner and Littlest and I headed right back out for karate. I was all kinds of frazzled by the time I got home again (officially) for the day. Le sigh. 

But on to more fun things…

Our weekend was reaallllly fun! Last week, I made a resolution to spend the weekend doing enjoyable things and not worry so much about the day to day drudgery.

On Friday, we went with some friends to a party at an antique gallery. It’s hard to describe this place but I will try. It’s basically a huge, huge space filled with art and artifacts from around the world. There just happened to be a display on embroidery and veils. It was sooooo cool.

Check out this little gem about a woman’s value being determined by her ability to embroider. We’d be totally valuable in Central Asian tribal culture, right?!

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The garments were seriously out of this world. I, of course, was drawn to the ones that were done in cross stitch.

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Look at that! Actual cross stitches!

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Seriously! Cross stitched!

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Can you believe that women made these… by hand… a long time ago… with no artificial light… and limited supplies? My mind was blown.

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There were big cool wall embroideries too. Why can’t I be that free and creative? I am officially inspired.

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Tom was not as interested in the embroidery as I was. He wandered over to look at the paintings.

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Artistic people being arty.

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There was music! And food! And people breaking out in spontaneous dance! It was a neat change from our suburban life.


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Saturday we went out AGAIN! Can you believe it? We tried a new Mexican place. I ordered the steak fajitas. Is it just me, or do you agree that the whole point of fajitas is when they bring out the sizzling skillet and everyone looks at you wishing that THEY had ordered the fajitas because the smell is just out-of-this-world delicious? Needless to say, I was mighty disappointed when my fajitas came out ON A PLATE. NO SIZZLING. NO SMOKING. They were still delicious, but BLAH. ON A PLATE. What’s the point?

Sunday I went to a fabulous outdoor market with Stephanie! It was cold, but fun. See? NO DRUDGERY, just FUN! Unfortunately, now we have no groceries or food or clean clothes for the week, but it was WORTH IT!

Here we are again.

I have been in a horrific mood lately. I feel like how Max looks at the beginning of Where the Wild Things Are.

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I went clothes shopping on Saturday. Clothes shopping is the worst when you’ve put on weight. So depressing.

Tom felt really sick all weekend, so we made a fine pair. Me- cranky. Him- sick.

On Sunday, Stephanie and I went to an arts festival. It was fun, but I was hot (See? More cranky). I did buy a cute old crewelwork piece. I’ll eventually take a picture for you.

The highlight (besides getting to hang out with Steph!) was THIS:

Harry Potter!

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Isn’t he a shoe-in? I like that he is holding his wand out as if in mid-spell for our photo.

Last night, I made sweet potato rolls to go with dinner. We are a carb-loving family, so I thought these would be a nice treat. I put the dough in the oven to rise and went about my business. Unfortunately, that business included forgetting about the dough and preheating the oven to start roasting the chicken. Seriously?! I forgot all about the dough until I smelled the towel (that was covering it) burning. Yikes!

The dough was kinda salvaged, but it lost its luster after almost setting the kitchen on fire.

And now it’s Monday. I am leaving for NY in a few hours. This is going to be a LOOOOOOOONG week.

A photo tour.

Firstly (is that a word?), I broke 100 followers on my blog! I know that some blogs have tens of thousands of followers, but I’m pretty thrilled with 100. Thank you!

Secondly, I am still going through photos which means that I am still talking about my trip. Here are some goodies from my phone.

Everything was so quaint.

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I really liked that all the stores had old fashioned screen doors (the kind that slam when you shut them) and weathered signs out front.

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I insisted on bringing home some maple syrup because they’re kinda known for that up there. Did you know that Grade A is for pouring on stuff like pancakes and Grade B is for cooking and baking? Now you do!

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They had this soap where we were staying that smelled so good. When I saw the shop where it is made, I had to stop in and get some. I especially like their tagline.

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There was a place that had the coolest embroideries.  I want! I want! I want!

arrows

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One night at dinner I saw someone who looked just like Kate Middleton! Of course, the real Kate Middleton was in England with her new baby George, but that didn’t stop me from texting a photo to my sister.  She did not think that it looked like her at all, but she’s always disagreeing with me just for the sake of disagreeing.  What do you think? I also thought I saw Emeril Lagasse and Zach Galifianakis (I had to look that up) from The Hangover, so maybe I just had famous people on the mind.

kate

This was the view from our table at lunch one day. The food was terrible, but the view was outstanding.

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Seriously, the views were out of this world. There were clouds and mountains in every direction.

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But let’s not lose sight of why we were there… Ironman! Here I am bored and taking selfies during the Athlete Meeting. Tom is clearly ignoring my antics.

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And finally a photo of Tom after the finish. I like it when they wrap the athletes in those foil blankets. They kinda look like a bunch of very tired Superheroes walking around in metallic capes. I think he is trying to decide if his medal is made out of chocolate here.

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Hope you enjoyed my pictures. Don’t worry… there are more! HAHA… Are you bored yet? Am I back down to 10 followers now?

Hello!

Hi Everyone!

I’ve neglected my poor little blog this week.  It has been a whirlwind since we got back home.

Remember how I was upset about work a few weeks ago? Well… with some encouragement from friends and family, I spoke up about it, and in a surprising turn of events, ended up with a promotion!  I am thrilled, but also feeling overwhelmed by the additional responsibilities.  It’s still sinking in.

Besides that, no stitching news or pictures. I finished everything on my embroidery project except for the french knots. They scare me and there are a lot of them. I have to work up the nerve to tackle those.  In the meantime, I’ve been back to my cross stitch sampler with renewed interest.  Hopefully we will have a nice sunny weekend for photo taking.

I miss the beach.

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I wonder if our little birdie friends miss us too.

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Top Secret!

Thank you for the super nice comments on my last post.

Did your menfolk have a nice Father’s Day?  We did.  I feel so thankful that the boys and I are surrounded by wonderful men who love us and take good care of us. We are blessed x10.

The boys and I baked brownies with a secret ingredient. Are you ready for it?

Black beans!

beans

I was excited because the recipe uses no flour or butter. It has a lot of sugar (but we’ll ignore that for now).

It was quite an ordeal though because we baked a whole batch before I realized that we forgot to add eggs. Oops.

Then I baked a second batch (the boys abandoned me by this point).  The trick to these is to blend everything really well so that you don’t accidentally bite into a bean part.  Then, your ruse would be up!  Unfortunately, half way through, the blender started smoking and burned out!

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I transferred everything to a big pot and used an immersion blender. MUST. COMPLETE. BROWNIES.

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This is right before I spilled the vanilla EVERYWHERE.

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I love my cute measuring cups.

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Here are the brownies right before they went into the oven.

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And after… they look like regular brownies, right?!!

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Now all you have to do is gobble them up.

Speaking of gobbling, we ate SO MUCH this weekend. My diet (re)starts RIGHT NOW.

Oh, and how is my embroidering going you ask?

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Super! Embroidery is so much faster than cross stitching.  It’s fun, but I do miss the precision of cross stitching. There’s just something about those little Xs.

Woe is me.

I try to stay pretty positive on here because it’s a cross stitch blog and who wants to visit a cross stitch blog and read about someone’s problems. But I guess somewhere along the line, my little cross stitch blog sorta became my “talk about all kinds of things in my life” blog, so there you go.

I’ve been struggling lately in my professional life and it’s really bringing me down. At first, it was just a bad day here and there and I was over it by the time I got home. But lately, bad days are the norm and I come home agitated, grumpy, depressed, you know… not a lot of fun. I’m trying to change things- my situation, my attitude, my goals. Tom and I talked about it last night and I feel a little better today, but it’s a slow process.  Too bad I can’t get a job as a professional cross stitcher. Now that would be the life.

In happier news, I started my embroidery project.

Here’s a look at the fabric and threads. I thought it would be pretty to embroider on a patterned fabric, albeit a very neutral one.

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I carefully traced the pattern using my fancy dancy Micron pen.

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All hooped up and ready to go!

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Tonight is movie night at our house so I can’t wait to park myself on the couch under my new lamp and get lost in this.  If ever I needed some serious stitch therapy, it would be now!

Let there be light.

Oh boy… did I ever have a good shopping trip yesterday!

Not only did I get the supplies for my embroidery project, I got the deal of the century on 2 OTTlites. They were already on sale for 50% off, but I spied a few on the top shelf that were marked CLEARANCE.  You better believe that I marched to find the closest salesperson with a ladder.

I got this one for $20!

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And this one for $25!

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We assembled them last night. The light that they give off feels a little eerie-whitish-UFO landing to me, but I’m withholding judgement until I actually try stitching under them.  Hopefully they will help with the eye strain.

Today is the Kindergarten talent show.  Littlest Boy is doing a karate demonstration and breaking a board.  I’m glad that he is so into karate. It’s the first thing that he’s really been “into”, besides video games and watching too much TV.  Last night in class, they started learning to spar. How ridiculously cute do they look in their sparring gear?  Who knew that they even made equipment that tiny!

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Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater.

I hate to say it, but I’m kinda tired of this project.

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One can only stitch so many berries before it gets really old. This border goes ALL the way around three sides of the piece. Ugh.

I decided to start on the man in order to combat my boredom.

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That cheered me up a little. I like his fancy coat and wait until you see the jaunty bow in his hair!

What I really should do is take a break from this project and work on something else, but that feels like cheating on a friend.

What I really want to do is try my hand at embroidery again. Then it wouldn’t technically be cheating, because I’d be EMBROIDERING not CROSS STITCHING. See how that works?

I really want to do this pattern.  It’s gorgeous and free! I love her work. Maybe this warrants a lunch time trip to pick up some supplies.  I feel a plan brewing!

Proud Mama Bear.

Last night, Tom had to work late so the boys and I were on our own. We ate dinner, did homework, had baths, and settled down for a cozy night.

I picked up my stitching and littlest boy surprised me by asking if he could stitch too. I was secretly thrilled but kept my cool so as not to discourage him with my dorky mom over-excitement.

I didn’t have any kid friendly cross stitch around, so just hooped up some white cotton fabric, needled up some thread (his pick- “green, bright green”), and let him go to town.

Can you stand the cuteness?

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We had a nice night and I’m a proud mama bear over his obvious talents. 😉

e stitch

 

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