Friday, July 1, 2016

Overwhelmed

Being back from vacation is no fun at all. I have  (a) a broken computer, (b) a car that needs repairs, (c) an oven that I can't use because it doesn't want to turn off after I turn it on, (d) the camping things still need to be cleaned up, (e) I think I'm on my last pair of clean underwear, (f) I cannot locate my rotary cutter to save my life, (g) a yard with two weeks worth of weeds that are managing to grow even though everything else is dead due to drought, (h) this list could go on forever but I won't bore you with more reasons why I'm stressed out.

I stumbled across this rather accurate comic strip the other day and it is particularly relevant now.

By AnemoneLost. Shared under the following Creative Commons License per the author. 
Only instead of Netflix, I'm throwing myself into a variety of craft projects in a sad attempt to bring some order and sanity into my life. Or at least a little bit of fun. I think part of the problem is that I naturally relax by being alone and doing my own little things but living with 30 other people while camping for a week is like social time in overdrive and I haven't had two minutes to sit down and recover yet.

(I apologize in advance for the lousy photos - my photo editing software is on the computer that is no longer working.)

I managed to hide in my sewing room on Wednesday while Jack was catching a movie with a Dagorhir buddy who was in town. Last night I had to go to an after work appointment and didn't get home until almost 8 pm. So today I took a nap, drank a coffee brought to me by my wonderful husband, and have been diligently avoiding human interaction ever since I got home by way of chain piecing a quilt coupled with Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince on audiobook. Headphones for the win.

Dresden Plates In Progress
I did finally receive my hand dyed fabrics that I ordered in mid May and was more than a little disappointed to see that the colors were no where near as vivid as they were pictured on the website. A little homework and advice seeking turned up the fact that aida cloth dyes much lighter than an evenweave, which is lighter than a linen, so if I want vibrant colors I will have to purchase a different type of fabric.


Regardless, its still prettier than plain white aida, so I started one of the kits. This is the beginning of Frog Pile by Design Works.

I've yet to decide whether to join Justine in Just One July for this month, but I suppose I'm out of time to make up my mind. I think that I could probably finish either my otter or the Library Kitten project if I did. I'll make the decision tomorrow. The idea of finishing a project is quite appealing.

May you have a happy and blessed Fourth of July.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Ragnarok Recap

Last week was spent chilling with *most* of our favorite people at Ragnarok. My brother even surprised me with a trip up to join us. It was really fabulous to see him!

Camping went much smoother this year than in the previous several years. The weather was cooperative, albeit quite warm and humid, but we had very little rain and didn't have to spend every day cleaning up from the natural disasters. I didn't take very many pictures this year but here was our camp entrance.


Here is our new tent all set up. The shade pavilion next to it was lowered due to the storms we were expecting that night. I LOVE MY NEW TENT. My only complaint is that it takes a while to set up and tear down.


Jack and I went down to Wargar's Third Annual Swine and Wine, which was a first for us and it was fun. It's a pig roast. Next year, I'm hoping to spread the word in time to get more people from Akron attending.



We also made it out to the Living Treasure Animal Park again, which is becoming annual tradition in Akron.





Plus we had the smallest member of Akron in camp for a couple days. His favorite past time was picking up whichever weapon was closest at hand and running around with it. He's currently holding a very light spear that is two to three times his height.


I even had time to get a fair amount of cross stitch in. I took both Library Kittens and Tribal Otter but I only spent time on the otter project. It is small and there is only one color of thread, making it a great travel/camping project.



Now its back to mundania, and a couple weeks worth of Ragnarok Recovery. I'm a little socialized out for the week, so I'm going to keep my head down and relax over the next few days, as well as start the post-Rag clean up process.

Linking up to Keep Calm and Craft On

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitching

I will not have much time for slow stitching over the next two or so weeks but I did take my traditional quiet Saturday morning yesterday and put a few stitches in Waiting for the Victoria Frances SAL weekend.



The blues are blending so beautifully. I would like to do a little bit more on this today if I can squeeze it in somehow. I'm feeling a little under the weather today, so I'm going to take it as easy as I can with Ragnarok coming up fast. 

The non-slow stitching I am doing right now is a linen underdress. This is made from the "natural" linen, i.e. a soft off-white. 


I'll have better pictures when its finished, but in the meantime, the pattern can be found here: Underdress. And my advice is to be generous, especially with the under arm measurement. If you want a gathered neckline, you'll have to add lots of extra inches to the across the shoulders measurement.

Yesterday while working on the under dress with my friends, I picked up some fruit, crackers, and cheese. My niece and I got all artsy as I was cutting up the fruit and this is the result. It was too pretty not to take a picture.


May your Sunday be a blessed one. Linking up to Slow Sunday Stitching @ Kathy's Quilts.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Patches Patches and More Patches

My poor embroidery machine has been working overtime stitching out the dragon patches. There was significantly more interest than I expected and I'm attempting to make twenty to twenty five by tomorrow afternoon.


I have thirteen done, so just over halfway there.

I suspect that I'll be sick and tired of looking at these by the time they are done, but it is significantly easier than trying to stitch them directly on everyone's garb.

In other news, I still haven't gotten my package of hand dyed fabrics from Silkweaver, even though they told me it was shipping this week. I have just emailed them again asking for an update, as no shipping notification has been sent out either. I'm very disappointed in the customer service so far and found that on Facebook several people have complained about it taking months to get their fabrics. I was hoping that it would be faster seeing as how I was ordering from a business based in the U.S. instead of the U.K. If anyone knows a reliable source for hand dyed cross stitch fabrics, I would most interested.

The other project for today was setting up our new tent to see how it works.


It's great! Loken and Terence helped us set it up. Terence promises to help us make it hurricane proof. The bugs get in pretty easily but I've never had a bug free tent. I'm making bug spray that I plan to use liberally. We're leaving it up overnight to see how it will hold up under the thunderstorms we are supposed to see tomorrow.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Project Mish-Mash

Okay, not much cohesion to today's post but a lot of various things that I have been working on.

Library Kittens is probably at about 75 percent complete.


The new patches for our Dagorhir group. I'm going to try to stitch out about twenty of these in the next five days.



A pair of garb pants with POCKETS! A first! Its really easy to do, just look up any tutorial on adding pockets. My only advice is to make them bigger than you think they need to be.


A new crochet project - a shopping/tote bag! Pattern is by Red Heart yarns and can be found here: Lacy Crochet Market Bag


A new recipe for salad dressing - this is a copy cat of a Maggiano's white balsamic salad dressing. Its not quite as good but both Jack and I liked it. I think Maggiano's version has parmesan cheese so I added some of that to our salads.


White Balsamic Vinaigrette:

3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon honey
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon garlic puree
1/3 teaspoon Worcestershire
salt & pepper, to taste
1/2 cup olive oil

Place balsamic vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard, garlic (I used minced), and Worcestershire sauce in blender or food processor and puree until fully emulsified. Slowly add the oil and continue to  mix until all of the oil is fully incorporated.


That seems to be all for now! What is going on in your life?

Linking up to Keep Calm Craft On