Monday, January 31, 2011

Weekend Progress Report: January 30, 2011

I can't believe it's been a week and a day since I last posted. Normally, I post my Weekend Progress Report on Sunday evening, but I was just too tired to do so last night. It's been a very busy work week with less time for stitching than I would have liked. The usual 12 hour workdays at the beginning of the week were followed by more hours than usual in the later part of the week. I had to give up the better part of my usual Friday day-off to the annual archdiocesan consultation luncheon, a three hour event with an hour commute on either end. And Saturday, which usually ends at 10:30am after morning classes, ended up being extended to 3:00pm for Confirmation interviews. I suppose this balances out, in part, the snow days in the past two weeks. The weather forecasters are predicting another storm for Tues/Wed, adding another 2-5 inches of snow followed by significant icing. Normally a prediction of 2-5 inches of snow would have me concerned but at this point, it seems mere icing on the cake. The "significant icing" is far more worrying since it will cause many traffic accidents and, probably, accidents due to falls and slips, as well. At this rate, I don't expect to see bare ground in my backyard and above the retaining wall till June ... well, that may be a bit of an exaggeration ... but there is already an 18 inch layer of snow in the backyard at present, accumulated over the past three storms ... and it just keeps getting higher and higher. We had two days with temperatures above freezing this weekend, but are back to temps in the teens again today.

The Crazy January Challenge: Sue Hillis' Cookie Santa: The last time I worked on one of Sue Hillis' Charmed Santas, I actually stitched four in a row, picking up the next as soon as I finished one. These pieces are addictive ... probably because they supply the instant gratification of lots of small finishes within a finish. For example, on Tuesday, I finished the cookie jar in one before-work sitting and on Wednesday, I finished the tray of cookies on the same shelf of the kitchen work bench. I like to backstitch discrete sections as I go along which increases that sense of completion. The tray of cookies was a bit of a pain to stitch: 12 color changes in a small area [approx 30x15 stitches], not quite confetti stitching, but darn close. I continued to stitch on this through the later part of the week, whenever I had the time ... and, consequently made some pretty impressive progress. It should be finished early in February and then it is on to the Day 2 Crazy Challenge piece, The Ice Dragon's Kingdom from Dragon Dreams.

Aury's Red, White and Blue Quaker Heart: I managed to finish the stitching on this one Tuesday morning before going into work. I really enjoy stitching Aury's designs ... quick stitches but with just enough complexity to be a challenge suitable to a "travel" project ... neither too hard nor too easy. Since I now need a new small and portable travel piece, I'll be moving one of my UFO's, the Fertile Circle's Needlebook, back into the rotation. The Crazy January Challenge has me a bit worried about ending 2011 with twice as many WIPs and UFOs than 2010, so I am making a conscious effort to keep some of the older stuff in the rotation as well.

And, the continuing back-order saga: no joy as yet on the floss needed to finish Dragon Dreams The Ice Dragon's Kingdom [Day 2 project of the Crazy January Challenge] which was ordered from The Stitchery Row ... I really need to call them and ask how that is going. But I did get an e-mail from Needle in a Haystack, letting me know that all but one of the back-ordered Perfect Palette flosses needed for Primitive Needles' Black'd Skie [Day 15 project of the Crazy January Challenge] are on the way. In both cases, I have enough of the needed materials to make substantial progress on these projects. It's just annoying to know that I placed the orders in mid-December and am still waiting. I blame the economy since I suspect small businesses can no longer afford to carry very deep inventories. Consequently, rarely called-for specialty flosses and new and unproven brand lines tend not to be readily available. I don't think I would have had this problem ten, or even five, years ago.


Rachel S said...

I had to order some of the Anchor Marlitt from 123 for Icy, my LNS didn't have all the colors. I hope this storm does not do what they said it would, but it's already sleeting down here. Keep safe.

Patty C. said...

I want to do Aury's heart too - It is such a cute pattern

Great progress