Has the weather been strange in your neck of the woods? It has been so strange here! It’s almost felt like spring – there’s no snow on the ground, lots of rain, plenty of mud. I don’t know what’s in store for the rest of the winter, but I hope it’s somewhat pleasant. Maybe we’ll skip winter this year and have a nice long spring? I hope I didn’t jinx it! I was planning to show you a few finished quilt tops today, but I’ve barely been outside for a myriad of reasons and haven’t been able to take pictures of them. So I’m going to show you my cross stitching progress instead and -surprise!- there’s been progress! I’ve also been baking up a storm, which is a new form of making for me.
I started Annie Bayliss on New Year’s Day last year with the hopes to finish it by the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee last June. Didn’t happen. And now I’m stitching it to honor her death and will alter the text to include her birth and death year. If I ever get that far, that is!
I last shared a picture of this project in November and have made quite a bit of progress (for me) since then. I’ve finished the border and for the first time in my life — the border actually worked out! I usually fudge those in some way. I also completed the second alphabet and feel like I’ve done miles of darning stitches. I have to say that I’m really enjoying this project and every letter feels like a major accomplishment. The fabric transforms after it’s been stitched on and I love the feeling.
When I first started stitching on linen, I thought my issue was magnification. I even bought a headband magnifier to help but didn’t find any improvement. What I’ve learned is that the most important factor for me is lighting, which is quite a challenge in my home. Because I spend most of the day standing up in the kitchen, sometimes I’m able to pull out some sort of stitching or a book to fill in the quiet moments. When I’m stitching standing up under the kitchen light, I can see the linen perfectly and my stitches are exactly how I want them. But when the kids go to sleep and I settle in on the couch at night, my eyes start to cross and I can’t find the weave of the linen. It may also be due to exhaustion, but I think lighting is the biggest issue. So I’m trying to find a solution that fits within my budget, which is basically $0. This is my effort to put my request out into the universe, hoping that the perfect lamp will show up at Goodwill on a day I happen to be there. Wish me luck!
In one of my yearly wrap up posts, I mentioned that I wanted to tackle baking in 2023. So far, so good! Because Colton woke up at 3:30 yesterday, I managed to finish up a loaf of sourdough bread (that was rising overnight), a batch of sourdough biscuits, and a batch of homemade cinnamon rolls — all before 9am. It ended up being a very long day and I was grateful to have those snackies to help us through. And this week’s baking has included an additional loaf of sourdough bread (a third loaf is in the oven as I type this), a second batch of sourdough biscuits, and a batch of sourdough blueberry muffins. The house has smelled amazing!
This weekend’s task: to comment on your blogs! I have been reading, I promise, but commenting when I’m on the go isn’t easy for me. And I’m looking forward to replying to the messages from all of you over the last couple of weeks. I love chatting back/forth with all of you via email or in the comments section, but I have fallen behind (again). I used to be able to count on this morning time to do almost all of my virtual correspondence, but things have been upside down lately.
I hope to be back here on Monday. I might be ready to share my word for the year? If I can focus on doing it simply, then I will. But I tend to overcomplicate things and will probably make a bungle of it. So my mantra for this next post will be simple.
Friends – I hope you have a lovely weekend that’s full of exactly what you need. Take good care.